Alistair Darling gets his hands dirty to mark project’s progress.

Transport secretary Alistair Darling will lay a concrete slab in the departure lounge of Heathrow’s new Terminal 5 today to mark the latest milestone in the project – the building has reached its full height. He will lay the slab with the help of BAA chief executive Mike Clasper.

Work on the fifth terminal at Heathrow began in 2002. The first part is due to open in 2008, with the second phase complete by 2011. Measuring 400m by 180m, it will be the largest single-span structure in the UK when it is finished.