1. Background and Context
The Department for Transport’s (DfT) Aviation Policy Framework (March 2013) advises that all airports in England and Wales with more than 1,000 passenger air transport movements a year should set up an air transport forum (ATF). The primary purpose of ATFs is to encourage partnership between airport operators, local authorities, transport operators, local people and businesses, and other relevant parties, to improve public transport access to airports, and reduce reliance on private, road-based transport, congestion, and pollution on nearby roads.
The Heathrow Area Transport Forum (hereinafter referred to as the HATF) has been in existence prior to this having been originally established in 1995. The HATF now has an increasingly important role, as ascribed to it in the Airports National Policy Statement (ANPS) of June 2018, in helping to develop and monitor Heathrow’s Surface Access Strategy for an expanded airport – as follows:
“The applicant must prepare an airport surface access strategy in conjunction with its Airport Transport Forum, in accordance with the guidance contained in the Aviation Policy Framework”.
“The strategy should also contain actions, policies and defined performance indicators for delivering against targets, and should include a mechanism whereby the Airport Transport Forum can oversee implementation of the strategy and monitor progress against targets alongside the implementation and operation of the preferred scheme.”
2. HATF Purpose
- Provide input to the preparation and development of the surface access strategy for Heathrow expansion.
- Provide input to Heathrow’s surface access delivery plans for the expanded airport.
- Oversee implementation of the Heathrow surface access strategy and monitor progress against defined targets within the strategy, alongside operation of the preferred scheme once consent has been granted.
- Provide robust challenge to Heathrow with regards to its performance against defined surface access targets and doing the right thing for passengers, colleagues and local communities.
- Provide input to on-going surface access initiatives related to the existing two runway airport.
3. The HATF Structure
The HATF comprises of two primary parts:
(i) HATF Board
The HATF Board is a small tightly knit senior board, with representation from all suggested bodies as outlined in the DfT Aviation Policy Framework (March 2013) (see Appendix A). The Board will challenge Heathrow and help do the right thing by surface access for Expansion. The Board Team will meet on a quarterly basis, as a minimum, to:
- Provide input to Heathrow during the preparation, and development, of the draft Heathrow surface access strategy and associated surface access delivery plans submitted with the Development Consent Order (DCO) application for the expanded airport;
- Oversee implementation of the Heathrow surface access strategy;
- Monitor progress against the defined targets and performance indicators, as set out in the Heathrow Surface Access Strategy.
(ii) HATF Wider Forum
The wider HATF Forum will be an extended group with representation from all suggested bodies, as outlined in the DfT Aviation Policy Framework (March 2013) (see Appendix A).
This group will meet a minimum of twice a year at conference/round table style events and will discuss matters raised during the preparation and implementation of the Heathrow surface access strategy and other transport matters relating to the airport.
Special Interest Groups
As necessary, the HATF will also establish ‘Special Interest Groups’ to support its work. Such ‘Special Interest Groups’ will bring together individuals to discuss and explore topical surface access matters at the airport arising within their respective areas of special interest and expertise and may be time-limited according to the timeframes of given matters. The HATF Board oversees the composition of the Special Interest Groups and their priorities for action. Means through which Special Interest Groups may convene could include meetings, and seminars, amongst others.
- Input to, review, shape and influence development of Heathrow’s Surface Access Strategy and associated delivery plans.
- Oversee implementation of the Heathrow surface access strategy
- Monitor and hold Heathrow to account in relation to the implementation of its Surface Access Strategy and delivery of the associated surface access targets and delivery plans.
- Define and set the strategic direction and objectives for HATF; ensuring that the necessary resources and plans are in place to deliver its aims.
- Communicate, advocate and reinforce a compelling vision and purpose for the HATF, internally and externally.
- Determine, oversee and review establishment and composition of the wider HATF Forum group, ‘Special Interest Groups’ and supporting processes and engagements to support HATF’s work.
- Discuss, debate and influence strategic issues facing the airport in relation to surface access.
- Collaborate with other groups, particularly the Heathrow Community Engagement Board (HCEB) and Heathrow Strategic Planning Group (HSPG).
HATF Wider Forum
- Discuss matters raised during the preparation of the Heathrow surface access strategy and other transport matters relating to the airport.
- Discuss matters raised during the implementation of the Heathrow surface access strategy
- Discuss and input to other surface access, and transport, matters relating to the airport.
Special Interest Groups
If established, Special Interest Groups will report into the HATF Board. Terms of reference and responsibilities will be agreed for each Special Interest Group at the time of being constituted.