There has been no “UKIP-style surge” in support for a third runway at Heathrow, despite the airport's opposite claims, an anti expansion campaigner has said.

The hub airport claimed last week there was now more support for a third runway than when it was proposed by the last Labour government.

It cited a recent Populus poll of 1,000 people that found 48 per cent were in favour of a third runway, while 34 per cent oppose it.

But the same poll carried out in 2007, when Labour was in control of the country, found a similar 50 per cent supported a third runway, while 30 per cent were against.

Hacan chairman John Stewart said: “Heathrow must be concerned that after more than a year of concerted, expensive and high-profile campaigning support for a third runway is little different than it was at the height of the protest six or seven years ago.

“There has been no UKIP-style surge in support for a third runway.”

Populus has carried out three polls on behalf of Heathrow in the past year and all showed a third of people refused to back expansion at Heathrow, while 50 per cent were in favour.

A spokesman from Heathrow said: “We’re grateful to Hacan for reminding us that there are and always have been more residents who support a third runway than oppose it.”

A referendum carried out by Richmond Council in May last year showed 80 per cent of people opposed a third runway.