New Redhill Aerodrome hard runway application submitted in July
A hard runway at Redhill Aerodrome is back on the cards, after a new application was submitted to Tandridge District Council. The application is for one hard runway to replace the current 3 grass runways – which cannot be used in bad weather. A hard runway will attract bigger planes, give a more reliable service and allow more flights. This application follows similar proposals rejected by both Tandridge District Council and Reigate and Banstead Borough Council last year in the face of fierce public opposition. Redhill Aerodrome has slightly altered their previous proposals, in the hope that will overcome previous objections. The plans are for movements to be at 85,000 per year, with a noise management plan in place, and the number of flights outside the stated operating hours of 7am to 10pm limited. There are, as ever, the over-optimistic promises of hundreds of jobs. Local protest group Keep Redhill Aerodrome Green (Krag) slammed the plans and said the latest application is very little different in substance from the one that was rejected last year. Decision expected some time after November 2012?
See also Redhill Aerodrome for more information
New Redhill Aerodrome hard runway application submitted
A HARD runway at Redhill Aerodrome is back on the cards, after a new application was submitted to Tandridge District Council.
The plans, submitted on Monday, are for one hard runway to replace the current three grass runways, and follow similar proposals rejected by both Tandridge District Council and Reigate and Banstead Borough Council last year in the face of fierce public opposition.
Redhill Aerodrome chief executive Jon Horne says the new runway will attract investment to the county
Managers at Redhill Aerodrome Ventures Limited, which runs the aerodrome in Kings Mill Lane, South Nutfield, carried out a public consultation ahead of finalising the plans earlier this year.
Chief executive Jon Horne believes the new proposal will overcome previous objections.
He said: “We are confident the changes we have made to our proposals address the reasons for the refusal in 2011 and that we will ultimately be successful in delivering what is a modest physical change to the aerodrome and its operations.
“Any scheme such as this will have its opponents as well as supporters and we have spent over two years now listening to what people say and have sought to address those genuine concerns that have been raised.”
The new proposal will see movements at the aerodrome capped at 85,000 per year, with a noise management plan in place, and the number of flights outside the stated operating hours of 7am to 10pm will be limited.
Flights at the aerodrome are currently at the mercy of the weather, with many planes grounded this spring when torrential rain made runways impassable.
Mr Horne claims the new plans will secure the 450 jobs in the aerodrome as well as potentially creating another 140, as a hard runway will attract bigger planes, give a more reliable service and allow more flights.
Aerodrome staff say the application addresses previous objections by altering the runway alignment. This means less land will need to be dug up and the hard surface area has been reduced by 25 per cent. The proposals also include road safety measures.
“We are poised waiting to invest in Surrey at a time when even Surrey needs more investment and jobs to help it,” Mr Horne said.
But protest group Keep Redhill Airfield Green (Krag) slammed the plans and said the latest application mirrors previous failed attempts to develop the green belt site. (See below for more on Krag ).
Secretary Paul Murray said: “This application is very little different in substance from the one that was rejected last year.
“Krag will vociferously oppose this application and will garner local support to defeat another application.
“They have a history of failure [with such applications] which we aim to continue.”
Redhill Aerodrome Hard Runway Planning Application 2012
On Monday 30th July 2012, Redhill Aerodrome Ltd (RAL) submitted a revised planning application for a hard runway to Reigate and Banstead Borough Council and Tandridge District Council.
In May 2012, RAL (Redhill Aerodrome Ltd) announced its intention to prepare a revised planning application and undertake a process of public consultation, which it undertook between 21st May and 18th June.
The decision to submit a revised planning application followed the refusal, on limited grounds, of its earlier planning application at the end of 2011.
This was combined with a decision not to pursue an appeal of the decisions for refusal, on that occasion. The application submitted today, (July 2012) seeks to specifically address the reasons for refusal of the previous application, through a range of changes and improvements, which are summarised below:
- Runway alignment has been altered to achieve a significantly reduced requirement for ‘cut and fill’
- The ‘hard surface’ area proposed has been reduced by 25%
- Minimal change to the landscape
- Reduced noise impact
- Proposals to improve road safety and create connections with public transport
Although noise was mentioned by the councils in relation to the Green Belt, noise was not, in itself, a reason for refusal of the last application.
In other respects, the application remains the same as that submitted in 2011.
The local planning authorities will undertake a 21 day consultation on the planning application and invite comments. The planning application will have a 16 week determination period, which means a decision is not expected before November 2012.
Details of the application including key application documents are available to view and download from the website below.
Krag – Keep Redhill Airfield Green
Read the Krag objections to the proposed expansion of Redhill Aerodrome here:
As they had threatened the owners of Redhill Aerodrome (RAV) have formally submitted yet another planning application to both local planning authorities, (Tandridge and Reigate & Banstead), to develop the Green Field Site with a hard runway.
We are opposed to the latest application from RAV to develop a hard runway on the site. It follows a least 3 other previous applications to develop a concrete runway at the grass strip site, all of which have been comprehensively rejected.
We have spent the last 19 years fighting with RAV over their various unviable schemes to develop the Aerodrome. The current application is little different in substance from the one that was rejected last year. In fact because of the displaced threshold aspect the runway it is in fact longer than the 2011 proposal by some 150 metres at each end!
We believe that the current system that allows developers to make repeated but similar applications amounts to nothing short of a “war of attrition”, disadvantaging both Local Planning Authorities and local people.
The government have recently made massive changes to the planning system and yet still allow this inequitable situation to continue unchecked. There is nothing to prevent developers from making repeated planning applications for the same proposal on the basis that they only have to win once. This effectively permits developers to wage a war of attrition against anyone who opposes their plans.
It encourages a deep pocket planning system which is both unreasonable and unfair.
RAV have a history of misleading the public over the various planning applications they have submitted over the past 19 years. They even apologised for previous “mistakes” at the recent Redhill Aerodrome Consultative Committee AGM. Any statements and/or information provided by them should in our opinion be viewed with huge suspicion.
To demonstrate their unreliability RAV claim that their latest proposed facility will have little visual impact on what they accept is a GREEN BELTsite. Yet the runway they are proposing will require them to lay a minimum of 37,475 m² of concrete.
This is the equivalent of about 37 Wimbledon Centre Courts.
How can this have a minimal impact on the existing rural landscape?
Some of the reasons why Krag is opposing the building of a hard runway at Redhill Aerodrome:
GREEN BELT: The site lies within the existing Metropolitan Green Belt, a fact even accepted by the applicants. There are no “very special circumstances” to justify overturning existing green belt policy and permitting this proposal to proceed.
INCREASED NOISE: Due to the nature of the current grass runway operation of Redhill based fixed wing aircraft, local residents are currently afforded a considerable element of respite from noise generated by the facility during winter months. This was accepted as an important fact at the 1994 Redhill Aerodrome Public Inquiry. The proposal will destroy this.
INCREASED LIGHT: Because of the nature of the proposed development there will be an increase in the amount of light generated by the proposed facility which will be detrimental to the rural area that it is situated in.
HOURS OF OPERATION: The increased hours of operations will cause considerable disturbance to local residents. This is unacceptable.
NOT SUSTAINABLE: There is no evidence that there is a requirement for the proposed facility and on this basis it is not a sustainable development.
TRAFFIC GENERATION: do not believe that the proposed facility will not have a negative traffic impact on the country roads surrounding the aerodrome.
JOBS: do not believe that the new jobs that the applicant claim will be created will actually be achieved as no supporting evidence has been provided.
A similar proposal to this was rejected last year.
The latest document (25th October in the list) on the Reigate & Banstead (R&B) Planning Website for Redhill Aerodrome shows that the Housing and Pollution Team manager of R&B required a computation of fixed wing noise at Redhill Aerodrome at a lower level than given in Chapter 11 of the Environmental Statement that accompanied the planning application for a hard runway at the aerodrome. It may be of interest.
Gatwick Diamond business group backs latest Redhill Aerodrome plan
11th August 2012 in News
Business leaders have spoken up in support of the latest bid for planning permission for a hard runway at Redhill Aerodrome.
Gatwick Diamond Business, which represents business and commerce in the region to provide what it calls “a united voice to influence Local and Central Government issues,” has said it “strongly” supports the application from Redhill Aerodrome Limited (RAL) to replace the existing grass runways with one hard runway and associated infrastructure.
The Crawley-based business group said the scheme would bring “real economic benefits” as well as add to East Surrey’s attraction as a business location.
Jeremy Taylor, chief executive of Gatwick Diamond Business, accused people who object to the scheme of “standing in the way of economic recovery.”
Writing in a letter of support, Mr Taylor stated: “I am writing to ensure that the business perspective is presented on the Redhill Aerodrome planning application for a fixed runway.”
He stated: “We strongly support the application as it will bring real economic benefits in terms of on-site job creation, as well as contributing to East Surrey as a business location.
“Our view is that this development will raise the profile of the north of the Gatwick Diamond, demonstrate that there is economic confidence in difficult times, and so it will be easier to attract inward investment and attract people to work in the area.”
He continued: “The development of Redhill Aerodrome is in line with Government policy at a national, regional and local level, as it allows for greater connectivity to domestic and international locations.
“We have to also bear in mind that the development not only creates new employment, but secures the 450 jobs that are on the aerodrome, as well as supports diversity in local employment.”
Citing local feeling against the plan, Mr Taylor stated: “In respect of the impact on local residents, the new application shows a range of changes and improvements that resolve the objections made to last year’s application.
“The ‘hard surface’ area has been reduced by 25% and the runway alignment has been altered to reduce the changes to landscaping, and there is improved provision for access to public transport as well as road safety.
“Although noise was mentioned by the councils in relation to the Green Belt, noise was not, in itself, a reason for refusal of the last application.”
He concluded: “In my view, anyone who chooses to oppose this application is standing in the way of economic recovery.”
RAL submitted its much anticipated revised planning application for a hard runway to Reigate and Banstead Borough Council two weeks ago.
Its last application was turned down by borough planners at the end of last year, and when it announced that it would be preparing a revised planning application in May, and began a public consultation exercise which ended in mid-June, its plans drew fire from East Surrey MP Sam Gyimah.
He called them “just a rehashed version of what we have seen before,” and said the proposals would have a “monumental impact” on residents and their quality of life.
Tandridge District Council also refused RAL’s last application last December.
Jon Horne, chief executive of Redhill Aerodrome Ventures Limited, stated on the aerodrome’s website: “We are confident that the changes we have made to our proposals address the reasons for the refusal in 2011, and that we will ultimately be successful in delivering what is a modest physical change to the aerodrome and its operations.”
Mr Horne said: “When it comes, that success will not just be for the aerodrome business, but it will secure and increase the 450 jobs it supports today to some 590 in future, as well as assist other local businesses and help attract much needed new investment into this area.”
He added: “We are poised waiting to invest in Surrey at a time when even Surrey needs more investment and jobs to help it and the country be more competitive and attractive as a location within Europe and the wider world.”
Mr Horne said the local planning authorities will undertake a 21-day consultation on the planning application and invite comments, and the application will have a 16-week determination period, with a decision not expected before November.
Salfords and Sidlow Parish Council, which in August last year held a public meeting on the issue which drew about 130 people, with a vote taken at the end seeing only two people from the parish not object, has announced it will be holding another public meeting this month.
The meeting will take place at Salfords Village Hall on Wednesday, August 29, at 7pm.
On its website, the parish council stated: “It is essential for people to come to the meeting, even if you have been to previous ones, so that when our observations go in we can say that there has been good public participation.
“RAL will be in attendance and provide a brief presentation on the new application.”
In its website statement, the parish council repeated its response to the four-week public consultation exercise held by RAL in advance of the current revised planning application, saying: “Salfords and Sidlow Parish Council has discussed the consultation document and will await the full application before making a decision.
“However, we recognise the residents of Salfords and Sidlow have made it plain in the past that they are opposed to a hard runway at Redhill Aerodrome.
“The parish council would usually object to inappropriate development in the Green Belt.
“Further, the parish council would usually object to any development which includes a hard runway at Redhill.”