Examination of Witnesses (Questions 4382
Ordered: that Counsel and Parties be called in.
4382. CHAIRMAN: I think we may proceed.
It is Mr Horton, I think, today.
The Petition of the Spitalfields Society
4383. MR HORTON: Good morning, my Lords,
my Lady. As you may recall, this morning I am appearing on behalf
of the Spitalfields Society, presenting part of its Petition.
I think the Committee knows that the Society has approached this
matter by having different aspects of the Petition presented by
4384. CHAIRMAN: Yes, and we are very
4385. MR HORTON: So I wish to concentrate,
as I indicated yesterday, really on the same issue as was raised
by the SSBA, the Spitalfields Small Business Association. Subject
to any guidance the Committee may want to give me and being conscious
of time, I was not proposing to develop it in opening because
I think I made the position clear yesterday. I am proposing to
call Mr Schabas.
4386. CHAIRMAN: What is Mr Schabas going
4387. MR HORTON: He is going to give
evidencehe is an expert and he gave evidence in the Commons
for the Mayfair residents about a different aspect in the Mayfair
areain relation to Route B. It is directed to this issue
which I raised yesterday that, on the submission I made yesterday,
there is a proper argument that a main alternative as referred
to in the European Directive is not a matter for the sole discretion
of the Promoters; it is a matter which warrants objective consideration.
The Promoters have throughout made it clear that they never regarded
Route B as a main alternative and, therefore, do not refer to
it in the Environmental Statement or give reasons for rejecting
it, if you recall, in 2001. They referred briefly to it at a preliminary
stage to indicate why they did not propose to consider that route
earlier. Therefore, the purpose of calling Mr Schabas is to give
the Committee, I hope, the material on which, if the Committee
were so minded, it could take the view that objectively it ought
to have been considered as the main alternative.
4388. CHAIRMAN: So you are dealing with
the EIA point?
4389. MR HORTON: Exactly.
4390. CHAIRMAN: You are not dealing with
the southern route at all?
4391. MR HORTON: Well, it is not ----
4392. CHAIRMAN: Are you promoting the
southern route? Is Mr Schabas going to come and say that it is
a very good route?
4393. MR HORTON: No. Forgive me, my Lord,
but I want to be clear what you are referring to as the `southern
route'. I am only concerned with Route B, although in 2007 a number
of possible alignments, you will recall ----
4394. CHAIRMAN: Look, I have to try and
get this across. There are two separate points. There is whether
or not the process of the European Directive on Environmental
Impact Assessment has been complied with ----
4395. MR HORTON: Precisely.
4396. CHAIRMAN:and that is something
that we will have to deal with because, on that, the House as
a whole will be the judge. There is also the question of whether
it would be a good idea to take the railway along Route B. That
is a separate point.
4397. MR HORTON: Yes.
4398. CHAIRMAN: Now, which of the two
are you going to address?
4399. MR HORTON: The first, my Lord.