Heathrow garden centre threatened by airport expansion plan

Ansell Garden Centre in West Drayton near Heathrow Airport may have to close depending on whether Heathrow's third runway, recommended today, is finally built.

The government has approved a third runway at Heathrow to expand UK airport capacity.

A public consultation will now be held on the effects of airport expansion before the government makes a final decision as part of a national policy statement on aviation.

MPs will then vote on that decision in the winter of 2017-18. It is unlikely that any new runway capacity would be operational before 2025.

Construction is not likely to begin until 2020 or 2021, the Airports Commission has said.

Ansell managing director Paresh Raithatha said: "The decision has just come out so we're not sure where we stand. It's still only a recommendation and they keep recommending this but have not got on with it."

He added that what happens to the centre, which he took over 13 years ago, "depends on the plans. Some take us out completely. If it goes ahead we wouldn't be here in the same way as we are now. A lot of routes here would go and people would have to travel a lot further around, which in commercial terms would be a nightmare."

Raithatha said the centre's online business could continue and that ordering for 2017 had gone ahead and it would be "business as usual" for 2017 at least. He said last year saw 14 per cent growth.

He added: "We have seen positive growth every year since we have been here and we're still growing, so why stop?"

He said the centre could be compulsory purchased eventually but there were still lots of questions around the decision, adding that once he knows he may look at other sites.

Raithatha said any Brexit-induced price rises had yet to kick in and that the industry could do with some inflation after years of lowering prices, such as Christmas lights at £49.99 two years ago and £29.99 this year. He said any wholesale price rises would depend on the state of sterling in 3-6 months when their hedged currency runs out.


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Just-in-time may just help

Just-in-time may just help

A just-in-time policy can be a smart move to aid cash flow in light of post-Brexit uncertainty, Neville Stein advises

Scale conversion - centres debate planteria approach

Scale conversion - centres debate planteria approach

Versatile space and focus on stock turn highlighted.

What will be the key garden trends in 2017?

What will be the key garden trends in 2017?

Gardening trends for 2017 could include cacti, urban gardening, living walls and unusual foods, a round-up of reports from analysts and retailers has shown.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Garden retail Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES

Our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. NEW: 2016 listing just published

Garden Centre Prices

GARDEN CENTRE PRICES w/e 16 November 2016
GARDEN CENTRE PRICES w/e 19 October 2016
GARDEN CENTRE PRICES w/e 21 September 2016

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here