With all the excitement about elections last week, it would be understandable if you missed that another damaging blow was struck last week to the Governments' case for expansion at Heathrow Airport.

Bob Ayling, the former chief executive of British Airways, said that expansion was "against Britain's economic interests", and is likely to prove a costly mistake. Mr Ayling is the first senior figure from the airline industry to speak out against expansion, though I, like many other local residents, have held this view for years. It is refreshing to see the flawed business case on which the Government has built so much of its argument for expansion so comprehensively destroyed. The Government fails to see that a hub airport will not bring in money to the local economy, as the majority of those passengers will spend little money in the couple of hours that they are actually on the ground. BAA continues to push this model as it relies on the number of flights and passengers that it can cram through its doors, not by how efficient it is.

I am even more appalled by the Government's attempts to sacrifice air quality standards across London in order to allow an extra 60,000 flights per year into Heathrow. Apparently, ministers are planning to ask the European Commission for a special deal to exempt the capital from EU limits on exposure to air pollutants. Time and again residents have been told that the runway will not be built if it breaches air quality limits, with ministers promising this in the House of Commons. It shows how out of touch this Government is with the views of local residents. Gordon Brown's time as Chancellor and Prime Minister has been full of smoke and mirrors, from the raid on pensions schemes to the 10p tax con.

Mr Brown has already received a bloody nose last week in the local elections. It is time for him to listen to people and say no to Heathrow expansion.