The hearing against government plans to expand Heathrow will take place in March 2019, a judge said today (October 4).

Mr Justice Holgate told the Courts of Justice in the Strand that he and another judge would oversee a full hearing in the six legal challenges brought against Parliment's decision earlier this year.

The two main challenges come from five local authorities, backed by Greenpeace, the Mayor of London, and from Heathrow Hub, which had put forward an alternative plan for expansion to a third runway at Heathrow.

There are also challenges from Friends of the Earth, Plan B and two individuals.

HACAN chair John Stewart said, “This is a blow to the Government. At best it probably thought it would just need to defend two or three of the challenges. Now it faces all six.

A Heathrow spokesperson said: “We are participating in the legal challenges as an interested party given our role as the promoter of this critically important, national project. Our work in delivering Britain’s new runway will continue in tandem with this process, following overwhelming support in Parliament. We remain focussed on the work needed for our development consent order submission in 2020 and we are getting on with the delivery of this project which will benefit the whole of the UK.”