For Channel M video footage and MEN write up see http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/s/1081365_tea_party_airport_protest
PROTESTERS staged a tea party in the grounds of an historic cottage to show their opposition to plans to expand Manchester Airport.
Airport bosses want to build a £20m extension to the freight terminal on land off Runger Lane, Wythenshawe.
They have applied for permission to demolish Grade II-listed Rose Cottage and three other historic properties nearby, as well as a natural pond and dozens of mature trees.
Environmental campaigners, politicians and locals braved chilly winds and rain for the tea party at the 400-year-old cottage on Hasty Lane.
Lib Dem councillor Martin Eakins said: "These plans were drawn up before we entered recession. The arguments for local air flight expansion didn't add up then, and they've lost further credibility since.
"The airport should do the right thing and withdraw these barbaric plans before its reputation is totally discredited."
The plans are expected to go before the main planning committee next month.
A spokesman for Manchester Airport said: “Rose Cottage and the area around it have been proposed for airport development since 1974 and we have kept our tenants informed of the plans.
“The long term prospects for aviation freight are strong, and we want to continue to build upon the success that Manchester Airport has provided for our region in terms of economic growth.”
The airport forecasts cargo using its World Freight Centre will increase from the current 166,000 tonnes to more than 271,000 tonnes by 2015. They say both units, measuring 196,000sq ft and 50,000sq ft, would create 60 jobs. The extension is part of the airport's massive expansion programme between now and 2030, enabling it to cope with 50m passengers a year and a huge amount of freight.