What is happening with the Gatwick Aircraft noise story
Times Newspaper Articles on Aircraft Noise
The articles are based on a report commissioned by the Council to Protect Rural England (CPRE) and prepared by Aviation Consultants To70, which claims that the Government are setting the noise threshold too high. We agree, and would add that the question of frequency is also not taken sufficiently into account as well.
The Tunbridge Wells conurbation is not only the largest and most densely populated area affected by Gatwick’s activities, but it also contains a large number of sensitive sites such as Schools, Hospitals and Nursing Homes as well as nearby historic buildings and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
You can see the final Master Plan (186 pages) or download it here:
NO SUPPORT FOR THE MASTER PLAN FROM MPs AND LOCAL COUNCILS
Our local MPs and the local authorities close to the airport are seriously concerned about the infrastructure implications, too, and are not in favour of the proposals as they stand. The Master Plan makes too little provision for the necessary road, rail, housing and other work essential to the schemes.
This is the Press Release issued by the Gatwick Coordination Group of MPs which includes Greg Clark, opposing the Master Plan proposals:
The Government published a Green Paper Consultation Document, starting the process which will introduce legislation that will determine aviation strategy for the next 30 years and more.
We are very concerned that the proposals give absolute priority to aviation growth over all other considerations, including environmental and noise issues. These are mostly addressed in weak and generalised terms. Economic issues are very important, but so are the short- and long-term health and wellbeing of the population and the Climate Change emergency.
The Consultation period was extended to Thursday 20th June, it will be very important to respond if possible. However, the Green Paper is a lengthy document (200 pages) so responding is far from easy. You can download the full Green Paper here:
Rt Hon Greg Clark, MP for Tunbridge Wells and Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, wrote to Stewart Wingate, CEO of Gatwick, in response to the Consultation on the airport's Draft Master Plan 2018. The Consultation ended on 10th January.
We think that Greg expresses the concerns of the constituency very well. You can read and download his letter here:
This ambitious project involves the major restructuring of the airspace above SE England by the Department for Transport and Civil Aviation Authority. The area to be considered runs from Exeter in the West to Norwich and the East Coast. It is a long-term project, intended for implementation around 2024 and to last until 2070. The process starts with airspace above 9,000ft, and will progressively involve integrating those plans with the flight patterns required by all the airports in the area. Active Community involvement starts in the later stages.
We attended a presentation at Gatwick on 3 November. A Briefing Paper was published which explains the plans, you can see and download it here.
This plan will replace existing arrangements in due course, we think that it will offer real improvements but there will inevitably be issues such as the concentration of flight paths that will have to be addressed.