I CANNOT believe that James Ramsbotham thinks that another expansion of the already over congested Heathrow Airport (LHR) is the answer to the North-East’s connectivity problems nor indeed that it is the UK’s only hub airport as in my opinion, it is neither (Echo, Jan 31).

Not only would a third runway at LHR mean the demolition of large swathes of housing and greenbelt, and an increase in CO2 emissions in an already heavily polluted area but it would also mean once again that the South East of England would benefit from a huge investment in public money regardless of the new blue wave of Conservatism sweeping through this area together with a hoped-for increase in our own public investment.

London Heathrow Airport is not the only UK hub airport as both Manchester and Stansted Airports are hub airports, arguably East Midlands too with the main European hub airport being Amsterdam-Schiphol, which is served by KLM from both Newcastle and Teesside and from where flights are much cheaper than from Heathrow.

Thanks to Mayor Ben Houchen Eastern Airways will commence flights to London City Airport on April 27 which is much better connected to central London than Heathrow and if Mr Houchen were to do so I am sure that a Teesside to Heathrow slot could become available if he was prepared to pay for it as airlines no longer operate from airports for the kudos but surprisingly, for money!

I am certainly no eco-warrior and I drive a diesel car but a third runway would be a disaster for the greater London area and given the recent fiasco of Crossrail and the continued blundering leading us into HS2 both of which are well over budget and late.

The best idea Boris Johnson ever had was Boris Island, to build a new London airport in the Thames Estuary with new dedicated road and rail links, four – yes four – runways and a huge decrease in pollution over the capital itself.

Both Hong Kong and Singapore have built huge new airports on reclaimed land from the sea and Boston in North America built and expanded its own hub airport on an island so it can be done.

If the Boris Island project had gone ahead when it was first mooted in 2011 it would have been finished by 2029 by which time we probably still won’t have a third runway at Heathrow, if at all?

David Thompson, Eaglescliffe, Stockton.