Heathrow consultation starts – 140,000 leaflets distributed – as airport hopes to minimise opposition on noise increase

Heathrow airport has started its 6-week consultation, to ask people living near the airport how they can “improve” on their runway plans – and reduce opposition to it as much as possible. The airport is sending out 140,000 short (12 page) booklets, to many neighbouring  boroughs, but not Richmond (where there is fierce opposition). The thrust of the consultation is on noise. It is extremely simplistic, and should not really be considered as a proper consultation. Except for people motivated to write a lot of their own text, there is no simple way to say “No, we do not support a new runway” in the consultation response form itself. There are no questions along those lines. The form only has two questions –  the first asking respondents to rank a list of criteria; the second asking if people think it is more important to have fewer communities living under flight paths affected more badly, or more communities affected a bit less. There is stunningly little detail.  Colin Matthews says: “This consultation is to make sure we correctly understand what local people value and that we can take their views into account as we refine our proposal.”  Everyone with an interest in Heathrow and its runway plans should reply to the questionnaire, and tell Heathrow just what they think, in the space for responses in Question 3. The consultation ends on 16th March.
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Heathrow consultation starts today

3rd February 2014

By Amy Dyduch (Wimbledon Guardian)

Wimbledon Guardian: Shortlisted: Plans for a new runway 
Shortlisted: Plans for a new runway

Heathrow’s six-week consultation asking for views on a fourth runway [sic !!?? - means 3rd] at the airport has launched today.

The airport wants feedback on its north-west runway plan, which has been shortlisted by the Davies Commission.

Heathrow’s chief executive Colin Matthews said: “We believe our proposal to expand Heathrow is the right way to deliver the capacity Britain needs to connect to fast growing economies around the world.

“This consultation is to make sure we correctly understand what local people value and that we can take their views into account as we refine our proposal.”

Richmond Council leader Lord True said: “We know what the residents of this borough feel; no new runway, no more night flights, no expansion of Heathrow.

“They proved that by turning out in their tens of thousands at our referendum last year.

“Faced with the recent dismal report by the Davies Commission we need to be united and unequivocal in our opposition to expansion.”

For the consultation questionnaire, visit heathrow.com/localcommunity.

http://www.wimbledonguardian.co.uk/news/10983262.Heathrow_consultation_starts_today/

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Consultation document

(12 short pages including many maps and diagrams).

This is the entire “interactive consultation document.”

http://user-0lbfwdw.publ.com/HAL-Community-Consultation

How to respond:

People can respond online, or they can ring a number to have a phone interview. Those who receive the booklets through the door can respond on the Freepost form, or they can attend one of the public exhibitions that are planned.


 

This is the entire online consultation response form content:

Shaping Heathrow’s north west runway proposal 

A public consultation: 3 February – 16 March 2014

Question 1

What factors do you think are the most important when planning a new runway?
All the factors listed below are important to local residents to varying degrees. Your response to this question helps us understand your priorities.

Please rank your top five in order of importance from 1 to 5 (1 = most important)

Aircraft noise
Aircraft safety/risk
Air pollution
Construction impact
Flooding
Historic buildings
Jobs/local employment
Loss of homes and businesses
National economic benefits
Public transport
Range of national/international flight destinations
Road-traffic congestion
Viability of local communities
Wildlife/ecology

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Question 2

Which of the following statements best matches your attitude to noise relief from aircraft and the number of communities living beneath flight paths?

– Providing periods of significant noise relief for all communities is more important than limiting the number of communities living beneath flight paths.

– Limiting the number of communities living beneath flight paths is more important than providing periods of significant noise relief for all communities.

– Don’t know

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Question 3

How can we improve our proposal for a new runway?

Please use the space below to tell us your ideas or to mention any other factors not covered by Questions 1 and 2.

 

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There is the opportunity of saying a lot more, in response to Question 3. The document says:

Heathrow question 3

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The consultation response form, such as it is, is at http://www.heathrowairport.com/about-us/company-news-and-information/airports-commission/local-community/consultation-response-form


 

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Shaping Heathrow’s north west runway proposal

A public consultation – 3 February to 16 March 2014

3.2.2014 (Heathrow airport website)

In December 2013 the Airports Commission, an independent body set up by the Government, included Heathrow on its shortlist of options for additional runway capacity in the UK.

Of the three proposals Heathrow Airport submitted, our option for a runway to the north west of Heathrow is the one that’s been shortlisted for the further detailed consideration.

There’s still much work to do to refine our proposal before the Commission makes its final recommendation to Government in 2015. As part of this work, we are now consulting with residents and the businesses likely to be most affected.

Since we first published our outline plans for a new runway, we have welcomed comments and feedback from local residents. We really do want to hear your views.

This consultation provides another opportunity to say what you think about our proposal and the issues that are most important to you.

This site contains information on our proposal for a new runway at Heathrow, the next steps in the Airports Commission process and how you can help us shape our proposal.

You can complete the consultation response form right away by using the link to the right of this page. You may find it useful, though, to learn more about the consultation by reading the interactive consultation document.

You can also use the links on the left to find out more about our proposals and the public exhibition sessions we will be holding across the local area during the consultation.

The public consultation runs from 3rd February to 16th March. I hope you will take this opportunity to get involved and let us know your thoughts on the future of Heathrow.

Regards

Colin Matthews

http://www.heathrowairport.com/about-us/company-news-and-information/airports-commission/local-community

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Compensation

On the issue of property compensation the consultation document says:

Heathrow property values and compensation

http://user-0lbfwdw.publ.com/HAL-Community-Consultation#11/z 

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John Stewart, chairman of anti-Heathrow expansion campaign group HACAN, has branded the consultation a ‘PR exercise’. The real issue is whether a new runway is needed in the first place.

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Gatwick hopes that by giving another 1,000 homes double-glazing it will defuse opposition to a 2nd runway

Gatwick airport continues to spend a lot of money in attempting to get backing for its 2nd runway and soften up opposition. It has now set up a new scheme – starting on 1st April –  to give people overflown more double glazing and house insulation, to attempt to cut some of the noise.  That, of course, does not work when the windows are open, or when people are outside – in a garden, or elsewhere.  Gatwick says it is expanding its noise insulation scheme, to cover over 1,000 more homes across Surrey, Sussex and Kent. People will be able to apply for up to £3,000 towards double glazing for their windows and doors as well as loft insulation;  ie the scheme could cost Gatwick some £3 million in total. They are now taking the 60 Leq contour, rather than the 66 Leq contour, as in the past – hence increasing the catchment area.  They are also extending the area covered by 15km to both west and east of the airport.  Stewart Wingate said “We understand that the public’s tolerance to noise is much lower than it was”… Gatwick is pushing hard to compare the noise problem it causes with the much larger noise problem caused by Heathrow, where flight paths go over many more densely populated areas. They ignore the issue of the low level of background noise around Gatwick, compared to background noise in a city or large town. 

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Gatwick's new noise scheme boundary
Image at http://www.mediacentre.gatwickairport.com/Images/Gatwick-s-new-noise-scheme-boundary-492.aspx
Imagine this huge noise area, doubled, 1 – 1.5 km south of the existing runway, if Gatwick was allowed a second runway.

 

Gatwick Double-Glazing Pitch Seeks Noise Edge in Heathrow Battle

By Robert Wall  (Bloomberg)
February 03, 2014

London Gatwick airport sought to put noise reduction at the center of a campaign to be chosen as the location for a new runway ahead of the U.K.’s Heathrow hub with a pledge to upgrade more than 1,000 homes with double glazing.

Gatwick will provide 3,000 pounds ($5,000) per house — about 3 million pounds in total — to fund measures including loft insulation and enhancements to windows and doors, the airport, owned by Global Infrastructure Partners, said today.

Gatwick’s campaign for local backing comes as Heathrow, Europe’s busiest airport, begins distributing booklets on its rival growth plan to 140,000 households and businesses. A government commission into runway capacity in southern England, led by Howard Davies, highlighted the two sites as best-suited to the expansion required to maintain London as a major air hub.

The Gatwick plan “takes into account both the increased sensitivity people have towards noise levels, as well as the frequency of how many times they might be overflown,” the airport said. While the extension of noise-control measures could double the number of homes involved to 2,000, some 70,000 would have to be covered if the same criteria were applied in Heathrow’s much more densely populated hinterland, it said.

Heathrow Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Colin Matthews said in a separate release that its six-week consultation beginning today will seek to determine what local people most value so that the expansion plan can be refined accordingly.

Noise Baseline

Heathrow revealed last month it was looking at shifting one proposed location for a third runway further south to reduce an overlap with the M25 highway that circles London and avoid destruction of historic buildings including a barn built in 1426 said to rival Westminster Abbey for architectural merit.

Even then, constructing an additional landing strip would involve demolishing 950 homes.

Gatwick said it has widened the catchment area for homes qualifying for insulation by setting the baseline at 60 Leq — a measurement of decibel levels over an extended period — rather than 66 Leq previously.

The noise contour has also been extended along flight paths by 15 kilometers (9 miles) east and west of the airport.

Gatwick, Europe’s busiest single-runway airport, said that with a second strip its noise would affect 11,800 people, less than 5 percent of the number already impacted by Heathrow today. It also argues that growth would be swifter and less costly than at Heathrow, which has broad airline backing.

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Wall in London at rwall6@bloomberg.net

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2014-02-03/gatwick-double-glazing-pitch-seeks-noise-edge-in-heathrow-battle

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Noise exposure contours for Gatwick Airport 2012

PDF, 3.8MB, 43 pages

Noise exposure contours for Gatwick Airport 2011

PDF, 4.23MB


.Gatwick new noise contours for insulationAbove is a very rough drawing of approximately what the noise contour – requiring sound insulation etc – might look like with the addition of a second runway to the south (rough line in red showing indicative outer margin of area even the airport acknowledges is very badly affected).  Drawing from AirportWatch, not from Gatwick airport, though based on the Gatwick map above..


 

Airport says: “London Gatwick announces most innovative noise mitigation scheme in Europe”

3 February 2014 (Gatwick airport website)

  • Ground-breaking scheme increases noise boundary by 15km each end of the runway
  • Number of homes which will now be eligible has increased by over 40%
  • Community must come first says Gatwick
  • Gatwick challenges Heathrow to match scheme on the day Heathrow starts community consultation

 

Today, London Gatwick has announced it is significantly expanding its noise insulation scheme, making it the most innovative of any airport in Europe. The new scheme will cover over one thousand more homes across Surrey, Sussex and Kent. They will be able to apply for up to £3,000 towards double glazing for their windows and doors as well as loft insulation. This will mean that over 40% more homes will be protected from noise than are covered with the old scheme.

The major changes to the scheme are two-fold. First the noise boundary for the scheme has increased by using a lower level of noise from 66 Leq to 60 Leq as a baseline with the boundary line drawn flexibly to ensure entire roads and communities are included. Secondly, the noise contour boundary has been drawn along the flight paths by 15km to both the east and west of the airport. We are not aware of any other airport in the world offering a scheme of this magnitude.

Crucially, the scheme takes into account both the increased sensitivity people have towards noise levels as well as the frequency of how many times they might be overflown. If the new scheme is taken up by all eligible households in the Gatwick area it would cover around 2,000 homes. As a comparison, if the same scheme was applied to Heathrow it would have to cover around 70,000 homes due to the fact aircraft have to overfly densely populated areas of London. A similar scheme at Heathrow would extend to Windsor in the west and Putney in the east, covering landmarks such as Windsor Castle and Kew Gardens.

The impact of both the level and frequency of aircraft noise on local communities needs to be a critical issue for the Airports Commission’s assessment of the Heathrow and Gatwick runway proposals. Gatwick’s noise impacts are already significantly lower than at Heathrow. With a second runway, the number of people impacted by noise at Gatwick would be up to 11,800. This is equivalent to less than 5% of the people Heathrow impacts today¹. Heathrow currently impacts more people than all of the other major European airports combined² and under their current expansion plans over 700 additional flights could use the airport each day.

Commenting on the proposals Stewart Wingate, London Gatwick CEO, said: “The leadership position we have taken on aircraft noise today shows the importance we attach to our local community as we continue to compete and grow from a single runway, but also as we plan to build a second. We understand that the public’s tolerance to noise is much lower than it was which is why we are now extending our noise insulation scheme to cover the 30km flight path east and west of the airport.

“It is crucial that the UK has a deliverable, quick and affordable solution to where the next runway will be. Gatwick can give the UK the economic benefits it needs at an environmental cost it can afford. The role of local communities is critical and must not be over looked. As Heathrow starts to consult its local communities about a third runway they should break their silence about noise and think seriously about following our lead.”

Independent noise expert Dr Ian Flindell said: “Extending the boundaries of Gatwick’s new noise insulation scheme to include more people at lower sound levels is a very innovative departure from existing practice, and demonstrates a huge commitment to the surrounding community. It appears to be among the most generous of similar schemes I have seen across other European airports and possibly worldwide. Aircraft noise can be a very serious issue for many people living near airports, and anything that the airport can do to mitigate this problem is entirely worthwhile.”

 

Notes to Editors

High resolution versions of the Gatwick and Heathrow maps attached to this release can be downloaded here:

Gatwick high resolution map
Heathrow high resolution map

¹ The CAA’s annual noise contours show that Heathrow impacts around 239,000 people today.

² Source: Dft Draft Aviation Policy Framework Consultation July 2012.

Changes to Gatwick’s Noise Insulation Scheme include:

  • Leq is a measurement used to express the average sound level over a 16-hour, 92-day summertime average.
  • Contours based on 60 Leq, which has been improved from the previous 66 Leq. This automatically widens the contour area covered.
  • Noise at 60 Leq level can be compared to listening to a conversation a short distance away. In comparison, 66 Leq is more akin to hearing a vacuum cleaner a short distance away.
  • The east and west boundaries have been expanded by 15km each way from the point of aircraft touchdown. This covers a significantly larger area at each end of the runway, where local people suffer from noise from approaching aircraft.

 

Gatwick offered all local households eligible for the previous scheme the opportunity to comment and feedback on it before designing the new scheme, as well as local authorities and Gatwick’s consultative committee GATCOM.

Gatwick will write to every household eligible under the new scheme in advance of 1 April to outline the process for applying for scheme.

About Dr Ian Flindell

Dr Ian Flindell is widely known across Europe as an independent acoustics consultant and as a teacher and researcher at the Institute of Sound and Vibration Research (ISVR).

He is a recognised expert in subjective acoustics, specialising in the assessment and management of environmental noise, particularly around airports, and has contributed to the development of standards, regulations and methods of assessment.

Dr Flindell has been an expert witness at major airport development public inquiries (for British Airports Authority plc) and co-authored the UK government report (for Dept. of Transport) ‘Attitudes to Noise from Aviation Sources (2007). He has also managed ISVR’s contribution to various EU projects including ‘Sound Engineering for Aircraft (SEFA)’ and ‘Community Oriented Solutions to Minimise Aircraft Noise Annoyance (COSMA)’.

http://www.mediacentre.gatwickairport.com/News/London-Gatwick-announces-most-innovative-noise-mitigation-scheme-in-Europe-8ad.aspx

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NOISE INSULATION SCHEME EXPANDED AT LONDON GATWICK

Written by   (Airport World)

Gatwick's new noise boundary scheme

Gatwick’s new noise boundary scheme

 

London Gatwick has announced it is significantly expanding its noise insulation scheme – which it says will make it the ‘most innovative airport in Europe’.

The new scheme will cover over 1,000 more homes across Surrey, Sussex and Kent, meaning more than 40% more homes will be protected from noise than are covered with the old scheme.

And householders will be able to apply for up to €3,500 towards double-glazing for their windows, and doors as well as loft insulation.

As part of the new scheme, the noise boundary has been increased by using a lower level of noise from 66 Leq to 60 Leq as a baseline, with the boundary line drawn flexibly to ensure entire roads and communities are included.

Secondly, the noise contour boundary has been drawn along the flight paths, by 15km to both the east and west of the airport, and Gatwick says, it is not aware of any other airport in the world ‘offering a scheme of this magnitude’.

The scheme is also said to take into account both the increased sensitivity people have towards noise levels, as well as the frequency of how many times they might be overflown.

If the new scheme is taken up by all eligible households in the Gatwick area, it would cover around 2,000 homes.

Gatwick says the impact of both the level and frequency of aircraft noise on local communities needs to be a critical issue for the Airports Commission, who will recommend next year, whether Heathrow or Gatwick should have an additional runway built.

gatwick

Stewart Wingate, London Gatwick CEO, says: “The leadership position we have taken on aircraft noise today shows the importance we attach to our local community as we continue to compete and grow from a single runway, but also as we plan to build a second.

“We understand the public’s tolerance to noise is much lower than it was, which is why we are now extending our noise insulation scheme to cover the 30km flight path east and west of the airport.

“It is crucial that the UK has a deliverable, quick and affordable solution to where the next runway will be. Gatwick can give the UK the economic benefits it needs at an environmental cost it can afford. The role of local communities is critical and must not be over looked.

“As Heathrow starts to consult its local communities about a third runway they should break their silence about noise and think seriously about following our lead.”

The extended noise insulation programme will roll out from April 1, 2014.

http://www.airport-world.com/home/general-news/item/3629-noise-insulation-scheme-expanded-at-london-gatwick

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Gatwick throws down gauntlet to Heathrow over noise insulation

Gatwick extends insulation scheme to cover more households, and challenges Heathrow to follow suit

Gatwick's map showing the wider area covered by its new noise insulation scheme
Gatwick’s map showing the wider area covered by its new noise insulation scheme

Gatwick is extending its noise insulation scheme to stretch 30km and has challenged Heathrow to follow suit, as the battle for an extra runway hots up.

As Heathrow launched its consultation about plans for a third runway at the airport today, Gatwick announced it would offer noise insulation to an extra 860 homes within the 60 Leq noise contour.

The airport, which itself wants a second runway, challenged Heathrow to match its offer – meaning it would have to cover an estimated 70,000 households, from Windsor in the west to Putney in the east.

Gatwick's map showing which new areas would be covered were Heathrow to copy its more generous noise insulation scheme
Gatwick’s map showing which new areas would be covered were Heathrow to copy its more generous noise insulation scheme

 

Heathrow already offers free sound proofing measures, including double glazing, ventilation and loft insulation, to some 40,000 homes under the flight path.

Gatwick’s current scheme covers just under 1,200 homes within the noisier 66 leq contour. It claims the new offer, covering a total of 30km of rural land from east to west, will be the most generous in the world when it is rolled out in April 1 this year.

Gatwick’s announcement marks a fresh intensity in the fight for a new runway, with the Airports Commission having whittled down the options to a shortlist of three: two at Heathrow and one at Gatwick.

Gatwick’s chief executive Stewart Wingate said: “The leadership position we have taken on aircraft noise today shows the importance we attach to our local community as we continue to compete and grow from a single runway, but also as we plan to build a second.

“We understand that the public’s tolerance to noise is much lower than it was which is why we are now extending our noise insulation scheme to cover the 30km flight path east and west of the airport.”

The Leq scale is used to measure average noise over an extended period; 66 Leq is comparable to that from a vacuum cleaner, while 60 Leq is that of a nearby conversation.

A Heathrow spokeswoman said: “Around 40,000 homes are eligible for noise insulation under Heathrow’s current noise schemes.

“Our proposal for a third runway would see fewer people affected by noise than today due to quieter aircraft and new flight paths. We have said that if government supports a third runway at Heathrow then any areas which do experience new noise or a significant increase in noise should be eligible for free noise insulation.”

Heathrow today launched a six-week consultation about its plans for a new runway to the north-west of the existing two.

Booklets are being sent to 140,000 homes and business around the airport asking for people’s views on the new runway’s operation. These will be used to revise its final proposal, due to be submitted to the Airports Commission in May.

People will also be able to have their say at a series of exhibitions, with locations including Brentford Holiday Inn on March 6, from midday to 8pm, and Hounslow Civic Centre on March 8, from 9.30am to 4.30pm.

John Stewart, chairman of anti-Heathrow expansion campaign group HACAN, has branded the consultation a ‘PR exercise’, claiming the real issue is whether a new runway is needed in the first place.

http://www.getwestlondon.co.uk/news/local-news/gatwick-throws-down-gauntlet-heathrow-6662545

 

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Stop Stansted Expansion calls for reduction and phasing out of Stansted’s night flights

Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) has made a detailed submission to the DfT consultation on night flights, calling for Government action to end the scourge of these flights. The government consultation proposes that Stansted should continue to be allowed 12,000 flights a year between 11.30pm and 6.00am. This is more than twice as many as are permitted at Heathrow and far more than are needed. The 12,000 cap was set in 2006, when Stansted was still expanding rapidly, and a 2nd runway was planned.  However, today Stansted is handling 30% less traffic than in 2006. Logically allowing Stansted 12,000 night flights a year can no longer be justified.  SSE argues that those living under Stansted’s flight paths should have the right to an uninterrupted night’s sleep, ie. a full 8 hours and not just the 6½ hours covered by the current restrictions. Stansted handled just over 8,500 night flights last year – well below the Government limit of 12,000. SSE is pressing for the limit to be cut to 7,500 night flights from October 2014 and then further reduced by 500 flights each year until night flights are totally phased out. The recent announcement by British Airways that it pulling the plug on its cargo operations at Stansted means that reducing the number of permitted night flights at Stansted from 12,000 to 7,500 should now be easily achievable.
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Government  must act to end night flights 

31 January 2014   (Stop Stansted Expansion)

Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) has made a detailed submission to the Department for Transport (DfT) calling for Government action to end the scourge of noisy night flights.

SSE’s submission is in response to a Government consultation which proposes that Stansted should continue to be allowed 12,000 flights a year between the hours of 11.30pm and 6.00am. This is more than twice as many as are permitted at Heathrow and far more than are needed.

The 12,000 cap was set in 2006 at a time when Stansted was still expanding rapidly. The Government anticipated that a second runway would soon be built and that more night flights would be needed. However, today Stansted is handling 30% less traffic than it was in 2006 and its plans for a second runway were cancelled in 2010. In all the circumstances, allowing Stansted 12,000 night flights a year can no longer be justified.

Stansted handled just over 8,500 night flights last year – well below the Government limit.
SSE is pressing for the limit to be reduced to 7,500 night flights from October 2014 and then further reduced by 500 flights each year until night flights are totally phased out. The recent announcement by British Airways that it pulling the plug on its cargo operations at Stansted means that reducing the number of permitted night flights at Stansted from 12,000 to 7,500 should now be easily achievable.

SSE’s submission also argues that those living in the vicinity of Stansted and under its flight paths should have the right to an uninterrupted night’s sleep, which should mean a full 8 hours and not just the 6½ hours covered by the current restrictions on night flights.

SSE has also highlighted the particular disturbance caused by night flights at Stansted because of its rural location where background noise levels are generally very low. The submission also calls for an immediate ban on aircraft using reverse thrust at night except in emergencies.

Martin Peachey, SSE’s noise adviser, commented: “For years the Government has been promising that it will bear down on aircraft noise at night. However, night flights at Stansted are still increasing, not decreasing. It’s time to reverse that trend and set a firm timetable for phasing out night flights altogether.”

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS
. SSE’s submission can be viewed online at: http://www.stopstanstedexpansion.com/night_flights.html

The current consultation relates to night flights at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted, and can be accessed at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/night-flights

This is the second part of a two-stage consultation process which began in January 2013. The new arrangements will come into force in October this year.
www.stopstanstedexpansion.com

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Stansted: Campaigners call for end to airport’s night flights

by Andrew Hirst (EADT)
Monday, February 3, 2014
Campaigners have called on the Government to bring an end to the “scourge” of noisy night flights at Stansted Airport.

The Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) group believes the current cap of 12,000 night flights a year, which is twice the amount permitted at Heathrow, is “far more than needed”.

SSE’s noise advisor Martin Peachey said: “For years the Government has been promising that it will bear down on aircraft noise at night.

“However, night flights at Stansted are still increasing, not decreasing.

“It’s time to reverse that trend and set a firm timetable for phasing out night flights altogether.”

The group made its submissions in response to a Government consultation which proposes to maintain the 12,000 flight limit between the hours of 11.30pm and 6am.

SSE believes the limit is outdated, having been made at a time, in 2006, when the airport was still expanding rapidly.

With Stansted handling 30% less traffic than it was in 2006, and plans for a second runway cancelled in 2010, the group claims that allowing 12,000 night flights a year “can no longer be justified”.

The submission also argued that those living in region had the right to a full eight hours sleep, rather than the six and a half hours included in the definition of a “night flight”. It also highlighted the particular disturbance caused at Stansted because of its rural location and the very low levels of background noise.

A DFT spokesman said: “Aviation plays an important role in the UK economy, but the government recognises the impact night flights have on people and expects the industry to reduce noise and minimise demand for night flights where alternatives are available.

“We will consider carefully all responses to the current consultation on night noise, which ends on Monday 3 February, and will respond in due course.”

Stansted Airport’s Chris Wiggan has previously said: “As the UK economy improves and passenger and freight movements continue to grow at Stansted, it is vital that government recognises this potential and retains our full night flight quota limit.

“Whilst we understand that night noise is an impor-tant issue for airport commu-nities, a reduction in the limit would have a damaging effect on the UK economy and only serve to transfer movements to airports with greater environmental impacts.”

http://www.eadt.co.uk/news/stansted_campaigners_call_for_end_to_airport_s_night_flights_1_3277522

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Scrap HS2 and move Leeds Bradford Airport next to M1 says Wakefield council

Calls for a new airport for the Yorkshire region have emerged as a Wakefield council urged the scrapping of HS2 in favour of a wider package of transport improvements. Wakefield councillors voted to oppose HS2 scheme which would see high speed trains passing through the district to a new stop in the centre of Leeds. The council wants a broader debate on the future of transport in the North including alternative proposals for high speed rail, investment in the road network and a possible long term replacement for Leeds-Bradford Airport. This would be better connected to major roads and rail lines and with room to expand over the longer term. It is thought that the current location of the airport is poor, and does not encourage more to use it. Some consider it may make better economic sense to invest money in improved transport links to the existing airport.  Those considering moving the airport say looking 20, 30, 40 years ahead there might be a better location so the airport is better linked to HS2, built on land around the M1, A1 and M62. However, a new airport could cost £5 billion. Who is going to pay for that?
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Calls for new Leeds airport

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  • by James Reed
29 January 2014 (Yorkshire Evening Post)

A NEW airport to serve Leeds could be needed to make sure the city thrives in the coming years, according to council leader Keith Wakefield.

Discussions are underway over whether a new airport should be built that connects with the proposed high speed rail line into the city and major roads.

Council leaders in West Yorkshire are concerned that Leeds-Bradford Airport’s location makes it hard to reach and could limit its growth.

Talks are at a very early stage but it is likely any new airport would be on land around the M1 and A1.

Coun Wakefield said: “We want Leeds and Yorkshire to be as ambitious as any other region.

“The existing operators of Leeds-Bradford have been very good and increased passenger numbers but if we are to make sure aviation is a key part of our transport strategy we have to recognise there are limitations on the existing location.

“If we are looking 20, 30, 40 years ahead there might be a better location so it can link with HS2 and create a transport hub.”

Wakefield Council leader Peter Box has also called for a new airport to be considered as part of wider improvements to transport in the region.

Tony Hallwood, aviation development and marketing director at Leeds-Bradford Airport, said: “Leeds-Bradford can meet the long term need for air travel in Yorkshire and we can continue to grow at a fast pace.

“That would be assisted through road and rail links from across the region. We could invest in those now and we could be ready to deliver over the next four or five years. A new airport could be decades away.”

http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news/latest-news/top-stories/calls-for-new-leeds-airport-1-6404971

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Scrap HS2 and move Leeds Airport next to M1 says council

Leeds Bradford Airport could move to the M1 corridor

Leeds Bradford Airport could move to the M1 corridor

  • by James Reed Political Correspondent (Yorkshire Post)
30 January 2014 

CALLS for a new airport for the region have emerged as a Yorkshire council urged the scrapping of HS2 in favour of a wider package of transport improvements.

Wakefield councillors yesterday voted to oppose the HS2 scheme which would see high speed trains passing through the district to a new stop in the centre of Leeds.

Council leader Peter Box called for a broader debate on the future of transport in the North including alternative proposals for high speed rail, investment in the road network and a possible long term replacement for Leeds-Bradford Airport.

The Yorkshire Post understands early stage discussions have been held over whether Leeds-Bradford, which has long been criticised over its location, can ever match the area’s long term economic ambitions.

Questions are being asked about whether it makes better economic sense to invest money in improved transport links to the existing airport which may have limited scope for growth or consider the more radical option of a new airport on a site better connected to major roads and rail lines and with room to expand over the longer term.

Coun Box said: “What Wakefield wants to do is to campaign for what we need and not what we have been given.

“What we need is greater connectivity. We need investment in our highways network to go alongside improving rail, including east-west links, and we need investment in a new airport.”

He pointed to an alternative plan, known as High Speed UK, as an example of how high speed rail could be built in a different way and improve connections between more towns and cities.

High Speed UK, devised by rail engineers and backed by the Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, would follow the M1 corridor with a spur heading west from Leeds and Sheffield across the Pennines to Manchester and a further heading north to Scotland.

Leeds City Council remains supportive of HS2 but is also among those suggesting that there could be a case for a new airport.

Coun Wakefield said: “We want Leeds and Yorkshire to be as ambitious as any other region.

“The existing operators of Leeds-Bradford have been very good and increased passenger numbers but if we are to make sure aviation is a key part of our transport strategy we have to recognise there are limitations on the existing location.

“If we are looking 20, 30, 40 years ahead there might be a better location so it can link with HS2 and create a transport hub.”

Talks are at a very early stage but it is likely any new airport would be on land around the M1, A1 and M62 and connected to a new high speed rail line.

Tony Hallwood, aviation development and marketing director at Leeds-Bradford Airport, said it was the fastest growing UK airport last year and would continue to grow this year by offering eight new destinations.

“Leeds-Bradford can meet the long term need for air travel in Yorkshire and we can continue to grow at a fast pace.

“That would be assisted through road and rail links from across the region. We could invest in those now and we could be ready to deliver over the next four or five years. A new airport could be decades away.

“A new airport could cost £5 billion. Who is going to pay for that?”

The Government is pressing ahead with HS2 with work due to start on the first phase between London and Birmingham in 2017. Services on the second phase of the project stopping at stations at Meadowhall and New Lane, in Leeds, are due to start in 2032.

Mark Goldstone, head of policy at the Leeds, York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “HS2 must be viewed as part of a wider integrated transport network for the Leeds City Region and we need to be thinking now about how each part of the region benefits from the increased capacity it will provide.

“There is little point being able to get into and out of Leeds city centre more efficiently by HS2 if there is poor connectivity onwards to Bradford, Wakefield or Huddersfield for example.

“We are hopeful that the proposed Combined Authority with access to significant funding for regional transport schemes should address some of these connectivity issues.”

HS2 Ltd, the Government company developing the project, is currently consulting on the route it will take through Yorkshire and the North West.

In its current form it will split north of Birmingham into a Y with one section taking trains to Manchester and another going through the East Midlands before arriving in Yorkshire.

It is proposed that trains will stop at a new station at Meadowhall before heading north to a point east of Leeds where one spur will head into the city centre and another will continue to a point eight miles short of York where it will connect with the existing network.

North Yorkshire County Council has expressed its support for HS2 but questioned the decision to have a second station in Leeds and the difficulties that could cause passengers connecting using existing services.

A Department for Transport spokesman said: “HS2 is set to boost the economy in West Yorkshire by around £1bn a year.

“Wakefield could also benefit from released capacity as result of journeys moving on to the high speed line and we are eager to hear from the council about how this could be used.

“But HS2 is just one part of the plan. Westgate Station has recently had a £8.6m upgrade to improve facilities and access, while plans for Kirkgate are set to completely renovate the station.”

http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/main-topics/politics/scrap-hs2-and-move-leeds-airport-next-to-m1-says-council-1-6405296

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 CAA aviation statistics 
 
Number of passengers (thousands) at Leeds Bradford airport in recent years:
2013    3,314,000  (up 11.6% on 2012)

2012    2,968,700  (up + 1.1% on 2011)

2011    2,937,000  (up + 8%  on 2010)
2010    2,723,934  (up + 6.7% on 2009)  
2009    2,552,614 (down -10.8% on 2008)
2008    2,860,447 (almost no change since 2007)
2007    2,860,000  (+3% up on 2006)
2006    2,787,217
2005    2,608,721
2000    1,573,056
1996    1,050,608

Read more »

Bedfordshire hares saved for now as Cranfield Airport calls off planned cull

Cranfield airport bosses have cancelled a planned cull of hares due to take place on 29th January after it was felt they should carry out a study of the animals first. They had planned to start shooting of hares and rabbits on scrubland south of the site “involving four qualified personnel carrying firearms.” The cull was going to be undertaken following a crash between a light aircraft and a muntjac deer as the plane was coming in to land on the runway on December 16th 2013 Management at Cranfield University, which owns the Airport, decided to call off the cull at the last minute after wildlife campaigners raised concerns that the proposed cull could seriously damage the numbers of hares in Bedfordshire. “The University has also requested the airport to carry out a further study of the safety risks and population dynamics of brown hare at Cranfield Airport. The airport has confirmed that an independent study will be carried out and any appropriate action will be based on the recommendations of the report.”
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Bedfordshire hares saved for now as Cranfield Airport calls off tomorrow’s cull

Written by KATHRYN CAIN (Bedfordshire on Sunday)

AIRPORT bosses have cancelled a planned cull of hares due to take place tomorrow after it was felt they should carry out a study of the animals first.Tomorrow Cranfield Airport had planned to undertake a shooting of hares and rabbits on scrubland south of the site involving four qualified personnel carrying firearms.The cull was going to be undertaken following a crash between a light aircraft and a muntjac deer as the plane was coming in to land on the runway on December 16 last year.However, this afternoon, management at Cranfield University, which owns the Airport, decided to call off the cull at the last minute after wildlife campaigners raised concerns that the proposed cull could seriously damage the numbers of hares in Bedfordshire.

A spokeswoman from the University said: “The airport has confirmed there will now not be any shooting during this operation. The University has also requested the airport to carry out a further study of the safety risks and population dynamics of brown hare at Cranfield Airport. The airport has confirmed that an independent study will be carried out and any appropriate action will be based on the recommendations of the report.”

Staff at the University had raised concerns about the planned killing after receiving notice from bosses telling them from Wednesday there would be machinery operating on the south side of the airport clearing the overgrown scrub area, which is anticipated to last up to three days, including a’controlled cull of the excessive hare and rabbit population’ within that area.

Read our original story here: http://www.bedfordshire-news.co.uk/News/Cranfield-Airport-to-cull-hares-following-crash-between-a-plane-and-a-deer-27012014.htm

http://www.bedfordshire-news.co.uk/News/UPDATE-Bedfordshire-hares-saved-for-now-as-Cranfield-Airport-calls-off-tomorrows-cull-20140128153000.htm 

 

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A day earlier:

 

Cranfield Airport to ‘cull’ hares (protected species) following crash between a plane and a deer

28.1.2014

Cranfield Airport is a small airport, close to Cranfield university in Bedfordshire, which used to be a RAF aerodrome. It is operated by Cranfield University. It deals with helicopters, training flights, and business and private jets. Not commercial airlines. It has a concrete runway of 1799 metres. Now after a crash between a light aircraft and a muntjac deer on December 16 2013,  the airport has decided to cull wildlife. This cull threatens the hares that use the surrounding area –  hares are a nationally protected species, of which Defra is working to increase the population in its biodiversity action plan. The local paper reports that “On Wednesday bosses at Cranfield University plan to undertake a cull of hares at the Airport in which four qualified personnel carrying firearms will seek out the animals.”  Wildlife groups say the proposed cull could seriously damage the numbers of hares in Bedfordshire, with the species already having become under threat nationally since the Ground Game Act 1880 gave landowners the right to kill rabbits and hares on their land. The airport is clearing the area of scrub vegetation to the south of the site, including a ’controlled cull of the excessive hare and rabbit population’ within that area. So much for universities setting an intellectual example of good practice on biodiversity.

http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=19646
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Cranfield Airport  is a small airport, close to Cranfield university in Bedfordshire, which used to be a RAF aerodrome. It is operated by Cranfield University. It deals with helicopters, training flights, and business and private jets. Not commercial airlines. It has a concrete runway of 1799 metres. 

Map showing location

 

Cranfield Airport to ‘cull’ hares following crash between a plane and a deer

 A hare A hare

27.1.2014 (Bedfordshire on Sunday)

A PROTECTED species of animal could be under threat in Bedfordshire if a planned culling takes place at an airport later this week, say wildlife campaigners.

On Wednesday bosses at Cranfield University plan to undertake a cull of hares at the Airport in which four qualified personnel carrying firearms will seek out the animals.

The cull is being undertaken following a crash between a light aircraft and a muntjac deer as the plane was coming in to land on the runway on December 16 last year.

Wildlife groups claim that the proposed cull could seriously damage the numbers of hares in Bedfordshire, with the species already having become under threat nationally since the Ground Game Act 1880 gave landowners the right to kill rabbits and hares on their land.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) are also working to increase the population in Britain as part of its biodiversity action plan.

Staff at the University raised concerns about the planned killing after receiving notice from bosses telling them from Wednesday there will be machinery operating on the south side of the airport clearing the overgrown scrub area, which is anticipated to last up to three days including a ‘controlled cull of the excessive hare and rabbit population’ within that area.

One member of staff told Bedfordshire on Sunday: “It’s a kneejerk reaction. They are acting in a completely cavalier fashion and helping in the decline of the population.”

John Rimington, from the Hare Preservation Trust in Bedfordshire, said: “Many airfields have hares, Luton, Cardiff, Bristol, you name it. Many airports within the UK and Ireland have resident hares and there is absolutely no policy of culling them elsewhere. Indeed airports (and nature reserves) are the only places where hares can be free of human predators which makes your culling plan even more appalling.

“They have to stop this and consult with the Bedfordshire Wildlife Trust and we need clarification on what the situation is with the muntjac deer and chinese water deer. There aren’t that many hares in Bedfordshire to start with, the majority of them are in East Anglia.

“Hares are intelligent, very fast and highly mobile animals who will naturally avoid danger such as moving vehicles or aeroplanes and have never caused any incidents elsewhere by interfering with air traffic.

Responding to campaigners’ concerns, a spokeswoman for the University said: “Cranfield Airport is required by law to ensure that the airport is run safely in line with all airports in the UK.

“The airport has some areas of overgrown scrubland which reduces visibility of airport safety areas and also harbours various wildlife that are a potential hazard to aircraft. The airport has planned maintenance to clear areas of scrubland over the coming week.

“The University, as owner of the airport, recognises the threatened status of the brown hare and requested that the airport authorities avoid shooting any brown hares during this operation.

“The University has also requested the airport to carry out a further study of the safety risks and population dynamics of brown hare at Cranfield Airport.”

http://www.bedfordshire-news.co.uk/News/Cranfield-Airport-to-cull-hares-following-crash-between-a-plane-and-a-deer-27012014.htm

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Read more »

Cranfield Airport to ‘cull’ hares (protected species) following crash between a plane and a deer

Cranfield Airport is a small airport, close to Cranfield university in Bedfordshire, which used to be a RAF aerodrome. It is operated by Cranfield University. It deals with helicopters, training flights, and business and private jets. Not commercial airlines. It has a concrete runway of 1799 metres. Now after a crash between a light aircraft and a muntjac deer on December 16 2013,  the airport has decided to cull wildlife. This cull threatens the hares that use the surrounding area –  hares are a nationally protected species, of which Defra is working to increase the population in its biodiversity action plan. The local paper reports that “On Wednesday bosses at Cranfield University plan to undertake a cull of hares at the Airport in which four qualified personnel carrying firearms will seek out the animals.”  Wildlife groups say the proposed cull could seriously damage the numbers of hares in Bedfordshire, with the species already having become under threat nationally since the Ground Game Act 1880 gave landowners the right to kill rabbits and hares on their land. The airport is clearing the area of scrub vegetation to the south of the site, including a ‘controlled cull of the excessive hare and rabbit population’ within that area. So much for universities setting an intellectual example of good practice on biodiversity.
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Cranfield Airport  is a small airport, close to Cranfield university in Bedfordshire, which used to be a RAF aerodrome. It is operated by Cranfield University. It deals with helicopters, training flights, and business and private jets. Not commercial airlines. It has a concrete runway of 1799 metres. 

Map showing location

 

Cranfield Airport to ‘cull’ hares following crash between a plane and a deer

 A hare

A hare
27.1.2014 (Bedfordshire on Sunday)

A PROTECTED species of animal could be under threat in Bedfordshire if a planned culling takes place at an airport later this week, say wildlife campaigners.

On Wednesday bosses at Cranfield University plan to undertake a cull of hares at the Airport in which four qualified personnel carrying firearms will seek out the animals.

The cull is being undertaken following a crash between a light aircraft and a muntjac deer as the plane was coming in to land on the runway on December 16 last year.

Wildlife groups claim that the proposed cull could seriously damage the numbers of hares in Bedfordshire, with the species already having become under threat nationally since the Ground Game Act 1880 gave landowners the right to kill rabbits and hares on their land.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) are also working to increase the population in Britain as part of its biodiversity action plan.

Staff at the University raised concerns about the planned killing after receiving notice from bosses telling them from Wednesday there will be machinery operating on the south side of the airport clearing the overgrown scrub area, which is anticipated to last up to three days including a ‘controlled cull of the excessive hare and rabbit population’ within that area.

One member of staff told Bedfordshire on Sunday: “It’s a kneejerk reaction. They are acting in a completely cavalier fashion and helping in the decline of the population.”

John Rimington, from the Hare Preservation Trust in Bedfordshire, said: “Many airfields have hares, Luton, Cardiff, Bristol, you name it. Many airports within the UK and Ireland have resident hares and there is absolutely no policy of culling them elsewhere. Indeed airports (and nature reserves) are the only places where hares can be free of human predators which makes your culling plan even more appalling.

“They have to stop this and consult with the Bedfordshire Wildlife Trust and we need clarification on what the situation is with the muntjac deer and chinese water deer. There aren’t that many hares in Bedfordshire to start with, the majority of them are in East Anglia.

“Hares are intelligent, very fast and highly mobile animals who will naturally avoid danger such as moving vehicles or aeroplanes and have never caused any incidents elsewhere by interfering with air traffic.

Responding to campaigners’ concerns, a spokeswoman for the University said: “Cranfield Airport is required by law to ensure that the airport is run safely in line with all airports in the UK.

“The airport has some areas of overgrown scrubland which reduces visibility of airport safety areas and also harbours various wildlife that are a potential hazard to aircraft. The airport has planned maintenance to clear areas of scrubland over the coming week.

“The University, as owner of the airport, recognises the threatened status of the brown hare and requested that the airport authorities avoid shooting any brown hares during this operation.

“The University has also requested the airport to carry out a further study of the safety risks and population dynamics of brown hare at Cranfield Airport.”

http://www.bedfordshire-news.co.uk/News/Cranfield-Airport-to-cull-hares-following-crash-between-a-plane-and-a-deer-27012014.htm

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Read more »

Local survey says 90% would use Doncaster Robin Hood airport if more destinations were offered

The small airports in the vicinity of Manchester fear they are losing out, as more passengers prefer to fly from Manchester. The local press in Yorkshire reports that Manchester continues to be the first choice airport for most travellers from South Yorkshire, followed by East Midlands airport.  More than 66% of South Yorkshire flyers say they use Manchester “often” or “very often” while 25% said the same of East Midlands, while around 15% used Heathrow on a similar basis. Just one in 14 said they used Robin Hood often or very often – a similar proportion to those using Leeds Bradford and fewer than use Stansted or Liverpool John Lennon Airports. However, 90% said they would like to use Robin Hood if it had flights to a wider range of destinations.Little regional airports hope travellers would prefer them to larger airports, particularly to destinations in Europe – because that cuts the time they spend in the airport. Only 10% were ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ with the range of destinations served by Robin Hood airport. Around 30% said the problem was lack of accessibility and connectivity with poor public transport and an inadequate bus service. Road access improvements from the M18 are planned.
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CAA data showing passengers at Doncaster Sheffield Airport
2006 – 947,000
2007 – 1,074,000
2008 – 968,000
2009 – 835,000
2010 – 876,000
2011 – 822,000
2012 – 693,000
2013 – 690,000   (ie. 35% lower than at its peak in 2007)


 

Smaller regional airports are desperate to grow. If another south-east runway is allowed, carbon targets mean their growth has to be limited.


 

90% would use Doncaster Robin Hood airport if more destinations were offered

29 January 2014 (The Star)

Manchester continues to be the first choice airport for most travellers from South Yorkshire, followed by East Midlands.

More than two thirds of South Yorkshire flyers say they use Manchester “often” or “very often” while one in four said the same of East Midlands, while one in seven used Heathrow on a similar basis.

Just one in 14 said they used Robin Hood often or very often – a similar proportion to those using Leeds Bradford and fewer than use Stansted or Liverpool John Lennon Airports.

However, nine out of 10 said they would like to use Robin Hood if it had flights to a wider range of destinations.

Dr Genovese says: “Manchester is the biggest international and continental airport in the region, but, surprisingly we were able to show that, if possible, people would prefer flying from smaller regional airports – particularly to destinations in Europe – because that cuts the time they spend in the airport.

Only one in 10 said they were ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ with the range of destinations served by Robin Hood and two thirds pronounced themselves ‘dissatisfied’ or ‘very dissatisfied’.

Nine out of 10 people cited the lack of destinations served as the biggest obstacle to using the airport, followed by around a third who cited lack of accessibility and connectivity.

“One of the big problems is accessibility,” says Dr Andrea Genovese.

“Of course there is the new road linking to the M18, but accessing the road by public transport has been quite difficult – and there is no direct connection from Sheffield, even though it is called Doncaster Sheffield Airport. There isn’t even a sign pointing to the airport from Sheffield.

“To get there by public transport, you have to take a train to Doncaster and then a bus or taxi – and there isn’t a direct bus service.

“There is a bus, but it makes many stops on the way to the airport.

“The parking is brilliant, but the problem is accessibility.”

While access is currently a problem, FARRRS – the Finningley and Rossington Regeneration Route Scheme – will change all that.

FARRRS creates a link between the M18, Robin Hood Airport and the site of the multimillion pound Inland Port or iPort project which is set to give a further boost to Doncaster’s bid to become the UK’s premier logistics hub.

Airport chiefs believe FARRRS will be transformational, cutting up to 20 minutes off journey times to the airport, almost doubling the number of people within 30 minutes of the airport from 600,000 to 1.1 million and increasing the number within an hour to around six million.

The road alone will give the airport a similar catchment area to its two closest competitors – East Midlands and Leeds.

The belief is that the road will make Robin Hood the airport of choice for many more people, boosting passenger numbers well beyond the 720,000 that used the airport last year and increasing the number of destinations it serves and airlines.

If that happens it could be the catalyst for a railway station to be built to serve the airport.

Approval has already been given for a station on the line that runs near to the airport, but airport passenger numbers have to reach a preset level to trigger construction.

FARRRS isn’t due to be completed until early 2016, but airport chiefs are already approaching airlines, using the Sheffield University research and its own studies as evidence of the demand for new routes.

They have also been urging the business community and the general public to add their voices to its case.

Given that it takes airlines up to 24 months to make a decision and introduce a new service and that FARRRS will take 18 months to complete, the timing of the launch of the airport’s campaign to secure new routes could not be better.

http://www.thestar.co.uk/news/business/90-would-use-airport-if-more-destinations-were-offered-1-6403074

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JLA aiming to win over 1m people who prefer fly out of Manchester

Airport boss Matthew Thomas is “absolutely” certain the airport will secure new bank banking facilities by March 31

A plane comes into land at Liverpool John Lennon Airport
A plane comes into land at Liverpool John Lennon Airport

Liverpool John Lennon Airport (JLA) wants to win over the 1m Merseysiders who currently fly out of Manchester Airport each year.

JLA chief executive officer Matthew Thomas also said that he was “absolutely” certain that the airport will secure new bank banking facilities before a March 31 deadline.

Mr Thomas said the ambition to lure local passengers away from Manchester was part of an overall strategy aimed at restoring passenger growth at JLA, which lost 1m flyers in 2013.

Mr Thomas said: “About 1m people a year fly to charter destinations from Manchester that could fly from here. We would like those passengers to fly from Liverpool.”

The airport has conducted market research that shows Merseysiders would prefer to fly from Liverpool rather than Manchester.

Mr Thomas explained: “90% of people living in Liverpool would prefer fly from Liverpool than Manchester. There is a strong preference.

“People said they wanted to keep money in the Liverpool economy.”

In recent years, JLA has lost market share to Manchester as its rival began targeting no-frills airlines like Easyjet and Ryanair that have traditionally been Liverpool’s biggest customers.

Mr Thomas said: “Once Manchester introduced low-cost traffic, then of course people from the other side of Manchester would use the closer airport.

“We now need to get more destinations served from Liverpool.”

Earlier this month the ECHO revealed that JLA’s auditor had raised a question mark over the airport’s future because it had yet to clinch a deal to renew its banking facilities. The current facilities are due to expire at the end of March.

Mr Thomas said: “We started discussions in February last year. We envisaged that we would have concluded those discussions.

“Are we going to resolve and renew our banking facilities? Absolutely.

“We see an opportunity to grow. We need all aspects of our operation to support what we’re trying to do.”

Liverpool Airport’s latest accounts show that it incurred pre-tax losses of £7.1m in the 12 months to March 2013 and another £6.5m during the previous year.

Earlier this week, Norwegian Airlines said it was withdrawing its route to Copenhagen.

http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/business/john-lennon-airport-aiming-win-6639994

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Read more »

Liverpool John Lennon Airport aiming to win over 1m people who prefer to fly out of Manchester

Liverpool John Lennon Airport wants to win over the 1 million Merseysiders who currently fly from Manchester Airport each year.The loss making airport said it was “absolutely” certain that it will secure new bank banking facilities before the March 31 deadline. The ambition to lure local passengers away from Manchester was part of an overall strategy aimed at restoring passenger growth at Liverpool airport, which lost over 1 million passengers in 2013, compared to 2011. Liverpool airport says it has conducted market research that shows Merseysiders would prefer to fly from Liverpool rather than Manchester, if flights were available. But they are not. “People said they wanted to keep money in the Liverpool economy” (by taking cheap flights abroad to spend their holiday money elsewhere??).  In recent years, JLA has lost market share to Manchester as its rival began targeting no-frills airlines like Easyjet and Ryanair that have traditionally been Liverpool’s biggest customers. Liverpool wants more low cost destinations. Their accounts show they made a pre-tax losses of £7.1m in the year to March 2013 and another £6.5m the previous year.  Earlier this week, Norwegian Airlines said it was withdrawing its route to Copenhagen.
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CAA data show the number of air passengers at Liverpool as

4,186,000 in 2013
4,459,000 in 2012
5,247,000 in 2011
5,008,000 in 2010

5,463,000 in 2007


 

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Smaller regional airports are desperate to grow. If another south-east runway is allowed, carbon targets mean their growth has to be limited.


 

JLA aiming to win over 1m people who prefer fly out of Manchester

Airport boss Matthew Thomas is “absolutely” certain the airport will secure new bank banking facilities by March 31

 
A plane comes into land at Liverpool John Lennon Airport
A plane comes into land at Liverpool John Lennon Airport

Liverpool John Lennon Airport (JLA) wants to win over the 1m Merseysiders who currently fly out of Manchester Airport each year.

JLA chief executive officer Matthew Thomas also said that he was “absolutely” certain that the airport will secure new bank banking facilities before a March 31 deadline.

Mr Thomas said the ambition to lure local passengers away from Manchester was part of an overall strategy aimed at restoring passenger growth at JLA, which lost 1m flyers in 2013.

Mr Thomas said: “About 1m people a year fly to charter destinations from Manchester that could fly from here. We would like those passengers to fly from Liverpool.”

The airport has conducted market research that shows Merseysiders would prefer to fly from Liverpool rather than Manchester.

Mr Thomas explained: “90% of people living in Liverpool would prefer fly from Liverpool than Manchester. There is a strong preference.

“People said they wanted to keep money in the Liverpool economy.”

In recent years, JLA has lost market share to Manchester as its rival began targeting no-frills airlines like Easyjet and Ryanair that have traditionally been Liverpool’s biggest customers.

Mr Thomas said: “Once Manchester introduced low-cost traffic, then of course people from the other side of Manchester would use the closer airport.

“We now need to get more destinations served from Liverpool.”

Earlier this month the ECHO revealed that JLA’s auditor had raised a question mark over the airport’s future because it had yet to clinch a deal to renew its banking facilities. The current facilities are due to expire at the end of March.

Mr Thomas said: “We started discussions in February last year. We envisaged that we would have concluded those discussions.

“Are we going to resolve and renew our banking facilities? Absolutely.

“We see an opportunity to grow. We need all aspects of our operation to support what we’re trying to do.”

Liverpool Airport’s latest accounts show that it incurred pre-tax losses of £7.1m in the 12 months to March 2013 and another £6.5m during the previous year.

Earlier this week, Norwegian Airlines said it was withdrawing its route to Copenhagen.

http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/business/john-lennon-airport-aiming-win-6639994

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90% would use Doncaster Robin Hood airport if more destinations were offered

29 January 2014 (The Star)

Manchester continues to be the first choice airport for most travellers from South Yorkshire, followed by East Midlands.

More than two thirds of South Yorkshire flyers say they use Manchester “often” or “very often” while one in four said the same of East Midlands, while one in seven used Heathrow on a similar basis.

Just one in 14 said they used Robin Hood often or very often – a similar proportion to those using Leeds Bradford and fewer than use Stansted or Liverpool John Lennon Airports.

However, nine out of 10 said they would like to use Robin Hood if it had flights to a wider range of destinations.

Dr Genovese says: “Manchester is the biggest international and continental airport in the region, but, surprisingly we were able to show that, if possible, people would prefer flying from smaller regional airports – particularly to destinations in Europe – because that cuts the time they spend in the airport.

Only one in 10 said they were ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ with the range of destinations served by Robin Hood and two thirds pronounced themselves ‘dissatisfied’ or ‘very dissatisfied’.

Nine out of 10 people cited the lack of destinations served as the biggest obstacle to using the airport, followed by around a third who cited lack of accessibility and connectivity.

“One of the big problems is accessibility,” says Dr Andrea Genovese.

“Of course there is the new road linking to the M18, but accessing the road by public transport has been quite difficult – and there is no direct connection from Sheffield, even though it is called Doncaster Sheffield Airport. There isn’t even a sign pointing to the airport from Sheffield.

“To get there by public transport, you have to take a train to Doncaster and then a bus or taxi – and there isn’t a direct bus service.

“There is a bus, but it makes many stops on the way to the airport.

“The parking is brilliant, but the problem is accessibility.”

While access is currently a problem, FARRRS – the Finningley and Rossington Regeneration Route Scheme – will change all that.

FARRRS creates a link between the M18, Robin Hood Airport and the site of the multimillion pound Inland Port or iPort project which is set to give a further boost to Doncaster’s bid to become the UK’s premier logistics hub.

Airport chiefs believe FARRRS will be transformational, cutting up to 20 minutes off journey times to the airport, almost doubling the number of people within 30 minutes of the airport from 600,000 to 1.1 million and increasing the number within an hour to around six million.

The road alone will give the airport a similar catchment area to its two closest competitors – East Midlands and Leeds.

The belief is that the road will make Robin Hood the airport of choice for many more people, boosting passenger numbers well beyond the 720,000 that used the airport last year and increasing the number of destinations it serves and airlines.

If that happens it could be the catalyst for a railway station to be built to serve the airport.

Approval has already been given for a station on the line that runs near to the airport, but airport passenger numbers have to reach a preset level to trigger construction.

FARRRS isn’t due to be completed until early 2016, but airport chiefs are already approaching airlines, using the Sheffield University research and its own studies as evidence of the demand for new routes.

They have also been urging the business community and the general public to add their voices to its case.

Given that it takes airlines up to 24 months to make a decision and introduce a new service and that FARRRS will take 18 months to complete, the timing of the launch of the airport’s campaign to secure new routes could not be better.

http://www.thestar.co.uk/news/business/90-would-use-airport-if-more-destinations-were-offered-1-6403074

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Wandsworth Council vows to fight Heathrow night flight threat

Wandsworth Council says it has vowed to fight plans by the Airports Commission to increase the number of night flights over London. The Government’s second stage consultation on a new night flight regime proposes no significant changes to the existing rules despite new evidence on the health and social impacts of sleep deprivation caused by aircraft noise. The consultation documents say the Airports Commission will make recommendations for night flights in its final report in 2015. Flightpath communities in Battersea and Putney already suffer an average 16 early morning arrivals before 6am.  They complain bitterly about these pre 6am flights (classified as night flights) and suffer from sleep deprivation and fatigue which affects their work and undermines their quality of life. The DfT’s own impact assessments link prolonged exposure to night flights to serious health problems including cardiovascular disease, strokes and hypertension. The Commission’s first report uses the outdated ‘57 decibel’ Leq metric to define aircraft noise impacts. That has infuriated noise campaigners who claim it grossly underestimates a flightpath noise footprint, and does not properly represent the noise experienced. The Commission will now look at some more effective metrics.
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Wandsworth Council vows to fight night flight threat

28th January 2014

by Jamie Henderson, Chief Reporter (Surrey Comet)

Surrey Comet: Wandsworth Council leader Ravi Govindia believes there are already too many night flights
Wandsworth Council leader Ravi Govindia believes there are already too many night flights

Wandsworth Council has vowed to fight plans by the Airports Commission to increase the number of night flights over London.

The Government’s second stage consultation on a new night flight regime proposes no significant changes to the existing rules despite new evidence on the health and social impacts of sleep deprivation caused by aircraft noise.

The consultation documents say the commission led by Sir Howard Davies, which is reviewing airport capacity, will make recommendations for night flights in its final report in 2015.

The Department for Transport’s own impact assessments link prolonged exposure to night flights to serious health problems including cardiovascular disease, strokes and hypertension.

Ravi Govindia, leader of Wandsworth Council, said: “We already suffer an average 16 early morning arrivals before 6am.

“Davies has already recommended more night flights without basing this on any credible evidence of the noise impact on local communities.

“He is relying on a study of people’s attitudes to noise that was carried out more than 30 years ago.

Sir Howard’s first report uses the outdated ‘57 decibel’ marker to define aircraft noise impacts which has infuriated campaigners who claim it grossly underestimates a flightpath noise footprint.

Davies has also shortlisted Heathrow as a potential location for new runways despite its existing noise impacts being far more severe than any other airport in Europe.

Wandsworth Council warns that more runways will mean more flightpaths and greater demand for night flights.

To respond to the consultation visit the Government’s website or email    night.noise@dft.gsi.gov.uk.

http://www.surreycomet.co.uk/news/business/news/10968359.Wandsworth_Council_vows_to_fight_night_flight_threat/

 

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see also

 

Better noise metrics than the discredited Leq to be used by Airports Commission in appraising short-listed runway schemes

Date added: January 28, 2014

In a blog, John Stewart says that at long last – and not before time – the Airports Commission is now considering improving on the Leq system. In the past, aircraft noise has been measured and averaged out, to give an Leq figure. This has been convenient to the aviation industry, as it gives an unrepresentative reflection of the reality of the noise, as experienced by those living below flight paths and being disturbed. For example, by averaging noise events over a period it is possible to claim that one Concorde flying overhead is the same, in noise terms, as having a Boeing 757 flying overhead, every 2 minutes, for almost 4 hours. Clearly that is not a sensible noise metric to use, when deciding to inflict more aircraft noise on thousands of people. The 57Leq contours have always been used to produce contours, in theory indicating where the noise is “annoying”. Now the Commission will be also using other metrics – and require the promoters of the short-listed schemes to use them. One is Lden, where noise is measured over a 12 hour day; a 4 hour evening; and an 8 hour night; with 5 and 10 decibels being added to the evening and night levels respectively to reflect the lower background noise levels at these times. And a 54 db LAeq metric. And N70 – which measures the number of aircraft above 70 decibels passing overhead.     Click here to view full story…

 

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Heathrow to hold 6 week consultation (starting 3rd Feb) with households on their north-west runway plan

January 17, 2014

Heathrow will start a six week consultation with local households on 3rd February, lasting till 17th March. It will ask for their views on Heathrow’s own short-listed north-west third runway plan. The airport wants to get its application as acceptable as possible to locals, to give it more chance of being permitted. “The results will help Heathrow understand what is most important to local residents and will be used to refine the runway proposal before it is resubmitted to the Airports Commission in May.” The consultation will be by post, and will be sent to the 120,000 households and businesses likely to be most impacted by the proposed plans. Those outside this area will have the opportunity to share their views online. There will also be drop-in events in nine local areas, to give people the chance to ask questions and “influence the plans.” The results will be shared with the Airports Commission, as part of Heathrow’s evidence. Heathrow knows that the issue of noise is key, and they will fail in their runway plans if there is strong enough opposition by enough people, on noise. They are hoping “mitigation” measures will be enough to reduce opposition. In reality people from huge areas of London, currently hardly affected by Heathrow aircraft noise, would be affected by this runway.   Click here to view full story…

 

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Airports Commission interim report recommends setting up an Independent Aviation Noise Authority

January 3, 2014

The Airports Commission’s Interim Statement on 17th December, advocating runways at Heathrow and Gatwick, also said it also recommended: “The creation of an Independent Aviation Noise Authority to provide expert and impartial advice about the noise impacts of aviation and facilitate the delivery of future improvements to airspace operations.” The Commission says that decisions made by the DfT or the CAA at present, and they are often seen not to be fair, and to be driven by political considerations and that the CAA is beholden to the industry that provides its funding. An independent body might over come this. The Commission says: “An independent, national authority with a credible and authoritative voice on noise issues could be of significant value. ….It could also act as a statutory consultee on other noise related issues, including involvement in planning inquiries which would have implications for populations affected by aircraft noise…..The authority could also play a role in the delivery of longer-term plans for additional airport capacity. ….should include responsibilities for advising the Secretary of State for Transport and the CAA in respect of appropriate noise compensation schemes.” The establishment of the Independent Aircraft Noise Authority would require primary legislation; setting it up will take time. Meanwhile there is work on noise to be done.    Click here to view full story…

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BA fears cuts to early morning Heathrow flights before 7am – says cuts would have “dramatic impact” on business travellers

November 16, 2013

British Airways wants to keep as many flights into Heathrow in the early morning as it can. It is saying it does not want restrictions on flights before 7am. BA’s head of sales and marketing Richard Tams said any further restrictions on landings at Heathrow between 04.30 and 07.00 each day could have a “dramatic impact on business travellers.” Currently only 16 flights are allowed to land at Heathrow between 04.30 and 06.00 with a total of 65 take-offs and landings allowed between 06.00 and 07.00 each day. The current night flights regime will remain in place till October 2017. BA says “These early morning flights are critical because a lot of flights from the US and the Far East land during this period – they are critical for people transiting through London.” Not letting BA have these flights – which are deeply unpopular with thousands of Londoners, who get woken up too early – would, says BA, “dramatically impact the schedule we could offer out of London.” Usual situation – it’s a question of the health and quality of life (and sleep) for thousands, up against t he ability of BA to make more money.

Click here to view full story…

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Government to make no significant change to night flights regime at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted until Airports Commission report

November 11, 2013

In January 2013 the DfT put out the first part of its consultation on the night flight regime at the UK’s 3 designated airports,Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted. The DfT said then that the 2nd consultation would be publishes later this year, to include specific proposals for the new regime, such as the number of permitted night flights – informed by the evidence from the first consultation. The DfT has now published this 2nd stage, but instead of any specific measures, it proposes no significant change to the night flight regime at Heathrow until 2017. It says it does not want to pre-empt the findings of the Airports Commission which is due to publish its final report in summer 2015. The current night flight regime for the 3 airports ends in October 2014. Normally a new regime is put in place to cover the next 5 – 6 years. This time the Government has decided in effect to roll-over the existing regime until 2017. The only change for Heathrow is a proposal “to extend the operational ban on the noisiest types of aircraft to include an extra half hour, the 23.00-23.30 period.

Click here to view full story…

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Evidence on how the 57 Leq noise contours for Heathrow fail to fully reflect aircraft noise impacts

November 11, 2013

In a blog on the anomalies of how aircraft noise is currently measured, John Stewart writes of the odd situation where roads in London are regarded as quiet, ignoring the obvious impact of Heathrow flightpaths overhead. This arises in areas such as Clapham, which are well outside the 57 Leq contour, which it is wrongly alleged, is the limit at which aircraft noise is a problem, or annoys/upsets people. The number of complaints about aircraft noise that come from areas well beyond the 57 Leq contour are evidence that it is not a measure that reflects reality. A better system for measuring aircraft noise experienced is Lden (day, evening, night) with noise in evening and night given a higher weighting, to reflect the greater impact, and greater annoyance, it has on those overflown. The European Commission requires member states to use 55Lden when drawing up their noise maps. That is more realistic than 57 Leq. It is understood that Sir Howard Davies, Chairman of the Airports Commission, is looking seriously at a more realistic noise metric.

Click here to view full story…

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Heathrow has highest weekly number of (noisy) 747 flights of any world airport

November 10, 2013

Figures from Anna aero, which celebrates routes, flights, links etc and associated airports, show that Heathrow continues to have by far the highest number of Boeing 747s of any other global airport. 747s are noisy planes, as well as being huge. They are likely to be as noisy as – or even noisier than – the A380. Some studies show the A380 being up to 5 decibels quieter at some measurement stations, though it depends on which engines the planes are using; the noise is both from engines and airframe. The 747 – 400 is ranked as Quote count 4 on departure and 2 on arrival. By comparison the A320 series is ranked at about 2 and 1 respectively. Anna aero shows Heathrow has 298 weekly departures of Boeing 747s, with the next highest airport Taipei with 174. Then third is Frankfurt, with 150. Now the A380 has taken over for new orders, there have been fewer and fewer new 747s being delivered, with just 20 ordered in the past 5 years and zero ordered in 2013.

Click here to view full story…

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Stewart Wingate tells Scottish business leaders a 2nd Gatwick runway would be better for Scottish travellers

Gatwick airport is working hard on its PR to win support for its runway bid. It has recruited a number of agencies to help with this, and is reputed to be spending some £10 million on its public relations. It is lobbying London councils that oppose expansion at Heathrow, on the principle that “my enemy’s enemy is my friend.”  Now Stewart Wingate has told a meeting of business people in Scotland that expanding Gatwick could be better for the Scottish economy than expanding Heathrow. He is announcing a new study into airport expansion and Scottish connectivity, commissioned through Northpoint Aviation, that considers levels of access and demand today, and the impact of expanding Gatwick on Scotland. Gatwick plans to return to Scotland in due course, with more details and to lobby for support. Stuart Patrick, chief executive of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said: “We are working hard to ensure that capacity constraints in the South-east don’t limit our future ability to access such vital national and international markets, and in the short-term this remains an issue.” Spending more on PR, Gatwick’s media relations manager, Heather Griffiths, said consumer perceptions were an “important strand” in the broader comms effort on their runway bid.  
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Gatwick boss flying the airport’s flag north of the border

27th January 2014 (This is Local  London)

Gatwick Airport’s chief executive is north of the border this week promoting greater connectivity between London and Scotland against the backdrop of the hotly-anticipated Scottish Independence Referendum.

Stewart Wingate is visiting Glasgow and Edinburgh this week with a message explaining how expanding Gatwick could be better for the Scottish economy.

Mr Wingate is due to announce a new study into airport expansion and Scottish connectivity to an audience of business leaders assembled at the Glasgow Chambers of Commerce. The study, commissioned through Inverness-based Northpoint Aviation, will consider levels of access and demand today, best practice around other European countries, and will assess the impact of a second runway at Gatwick on Scotland’s connectivity to London and the world. Gatwick Airport will return to Scotland to present the study’s findings and seek more views in due course.

He continued: “Scotland is very important to Gatwick and our planned expansion will protect competition and deliver cheaper travel to more destinations for the people of Scotland.”

Stuart Patrick, chief executive of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said: “We are delighted that the chief executive of London Gatwick has come to Glasgow to listen to the views of our members. “Access to London is vital for the businesses we represent and for the success of the local and national economies, and Stewart has recognised that today.”

He said: “We are working hard to ensure that capacity constraints in the South-east don’t limit our future ability to access such vital national and international markets, and in the short-term this remains an issue.”

Gatwick Airport is the UK’s second largest airport and the busiest single-runway airport in the world. It serves more than 200 destinations in 90 countries for around 35 million passengers a year on short and long-haul point-to-point services. It is also a major economic driver for the South-east, generating around 23,000 on-airport jobs and a further 13,000 jobs through related activities. Gatwick is owned by a group of international investment funds, of which Global Infrastructure Partners is the largest shareholder.

http://www.thisislocallondon.co.uk/news/10966022.Gatwick_boss_flying_the_airport_s_flag_north_of_the_border/

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Second Gatwick runway better for Scots travellers says airport chief

by Helen McArdle  (Herald Scotland)

SCOTS travellers would be able to access more low-cost international routes if Gatwick Airport was given the go-ahead to build a second runway, its chief executive has said.

Stewart Wingate has made the case for expanding Gatwick over Heathrow to business leaders in Glasgow during a visit to the city.

Mr Wingate, previously customer services director for BAA at Glasgow Airport, said: “The debate over airport expansion in the South East is not just about what is good for London, it is about delivering economic benefits, more affordable travel and greater connectivity for passengers throughout the UK. Scotland is very important to Gatwick and our planned expansion will protect competition and deliver cheaper travel to more destinations for the people of Scotland.”

http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/transport/second-gatwick-runway-better-for-scots-travellers-says-airport-chief.23284209

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Gatwick Airport prepares to review consumer and digital PR

23 January 2014

by John Owens (Campaign Live)

Gatwick Airport is in the early stages of drawing up a brief for its consumer and digital PR accounts, which are handled by The Red Consultancy and Rabbit respectively.

The way ahead: Gatwick Airport is trying to secure a new runway
The way ahead: Gatwick Airport is trying to secure a new runway
The review comes as the airport seeks to move on from winter chaos and show off its global credentials to consumers while the Government considers how best to grow Britain’s transport capacity.Gatwick media relations manager Heather Griffiths said that both agencies had been invited to repitch for the work, with the formal procurement process likely to begin next month.

Referencing Gatwick’s sale by Heathrow owner BAA to Global Infrastructure Partners, she said: “Gatwick has come a long way in four-and-a-half years of new ownership and has really transformed not just in terms of its facilities but how it is perceived.

“Traditionally it has been a leisure airport but there is a growing business element to it, and it now serves a lot more long-haul routes. It’s about changing the perception of it from a ‘bucket and spade’ holiday [carrier] to a world class facility.”

Gatwick has pledged to spend a further £1bn in the airport between this year and 2019 as it makes the case to be allowed a new runway in the South East amid fraught political considerations.

In a report released earlier this month, and ahead of a final recommendation expected in 2015, the Airport Commission shortlisted a third runway at Heathrow and a second runway at Gatwick as likely final contenders for airport expansion.

However, Gatwick’s image will not have been helped by travel delays over Christmas, which prompted an apology from CEO Stewart Wingate.

Consumer perceptions were an “important strand” in the broader comms effort around the Airport Commission’s deliberations, Griffiths claimed, adding:

“Passengers are at the heart of the aviation debate, and any activities we do in digital and consumer will need to show an awareness of what’s happening more widely. It is about getting people involved in the debate and ensuring their views are heard, with social media a really important part of that.”

http://m.campaignlive.co.uk/article/1228316/gatwick-airport-prepares-review-consumer-digital-pr

 


 

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Earlier

 

Gatwick Airport appoints MI6 HQ architect Sir Terry Farrell to promote its 2nd runway plans

July 9, 2013     Gatwick Airport has appointed a leading architect, Sir Terry Farrell, to help in its plans to build a 2nd runway. Sir Terry will help Gatwick in its proposals for a “constellation of 3 London airports” with 2 runways each – 2+2+2. Gatwick hopes competition between it, Heathrow and Stansted was “the best solution for London”. Sir Terry’s previous projects include the MI6 building and Home Office headquarters in London and Incheon Airport in South Korea. Sir Terry’s firm, Farrells, will look at the impact on London of having competing airports of equal size compared to a single “mega-hub” airport. He said: “The world city of London, with the largest aviation market in the world, is the hub and its airport infrastructure needs to evolve and grow around the city” and that “a single mega-hub airport is at significant odds with what London needs.”      Click here to view full story…

 

Gatwick airport employs PR agencies to help sway opinion in favour of 2nd runway

5.2.2013

Gatwick Airport has brought in Fishburn Hedges (a corporate PR agency) and the London Communications Agency on an integrated PR and public affairs brief, in order to try to drum up support for building a 2nd runway. Both agencies will work directly with the airport’s communications staff. They will be aiming to work at the local and regional level to “engage key stakeholders in London and West Sussex.” Gatwick is currently developing detailed expansion plans that could double the airport’s annual capacity to around 70 million passengers and will submit its case to the Airports Commission shortly.  Local campaigners have fought the threat of a second runway for years, as it would have seriously negative environmental and quality of life impacts for the area. Gatwick is legally prevented from starting a 2nd runway before 2019. http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=610

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