22 JUNE 2015


© 2022 Business Travel News Ltd.

Article from BTNews 22 JUNE 2015

A BTN Special: The Wrong Way, The Old Way and the Modern Way

The report by the Airports Commission is coming to the boil. 

It was deliberately delayed until after the election.  It now appears it might be further deferred until Parliament has gone into recess on 21 July.  Is this a ploy for the Prime Minister to accept recommendations without fear of comment from Westminster, or just another postponing of a decision?  

In the meantime the Master of the Air has fashioned a story from far away, but not that far from Hounslow Heath.  Which route to take?  That is the question. One of three?  Or get stuck in the bog!


Once upon a time there was a little Kingdom stuck on the northwest corner of a much larger collection of Kingdoms. The capital city was large and prosperous but the little Kingdom didn`t have much in the way of natural resources and the weather was awful. However the people were innovative and hard working and punched above their weight. There were many visitors from other Kingdoms who came to trade and to see the many old buildings. The residents also liked to travel for business and to escape the mediocre climate.

There was a problem, travellers used large stagecoaches and although there were many Coaching Houses and Stables the large one for the main city was full. The Rulers had known this for many years but just couldn`t decide what to do about it, so they chose a very clever and honourable Knight of the Realm to form a Committee to study the issue, filter the data and make a recommendation.  The Knight had some intellectual advisors and the Rulers gave some of their best servants to help clarify all the information and sort out the truth from the half truths and the lies.

After many months and much debate a shortlist of suggestions from three different tribes was offered for the means of providing additional Coach and Horse accommodation. There were the Windies from the far south, the NetherKayians from the near north and the Hubbits from the near west.

The Windies shouted loudly that their grass was greener and that they should have the new business. The operators of the Stagecoaches told them that their pub was just too far from the big City and customers just didn`t like to go there. Anyway in the past, they had tried the grass and it wasn`t greener. The operators said that even if they built bigger stables they would only send the odd pony and trap or horse and cart and would keep their new, large coaches for other Kingdoms. Still the Windies kept shouting.

The Netherkayians owned the big stable and ran it very well, it was probably the best stable in the world. However there were only two main tracks into their House of the Netherkayians both very long passing right through the middle of the city. This was because the Coaches in the past had been unwieldy, cumbersome and difficult to steer. The residents saw the benefits brought by the travellers but did not like the noise and emission from the horses. Unfortunately the suggestion offered for growth was really just more of the same, Three tracks through the city, which required much land and many houses to be uprooted. Their plan was costly and did not take into account the advances made by modern vehicles.

The Hubbits were the outsiders, but were innovative little people who realised that new stagecoaches had quieter wheels and hooves and that long straight approach paths were no longer needed. Just as important, the brakes were much improved on the coaches and the use of a gallop protection device (GPS) meant that the horses could be steered around the edges of the city causing much less annoyance to the neighbours.  This expansion plan of the main city stables would be cheaper and far less disruptive.

All the ideas had to deal with the associated emissions. In truth most of the problem was due to local farm animals and the large carts on paths near the Coach House. This issue had arisen from a suggestion from previous Rulers that horses be given a certain diet. Other Kingdoms did not have this issue as they used a different food for their animals. The solution therefore was simple, the present rulers had to tell the local farmers that in the future they should use the alternative oats which produced lower emissions.

So the Committee will soon make their recommendation to the Rulers and they will then have to decide if they will allow implementation of The Wrong Way, The Old Way or The Modern Way.  What is hoped is that they don`t simply say No Way.    Jock Lowe

Index/Home page

OUR READERS' FINEST WORDS (All times and dates are GMT)

All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum