SAEN are asking Southend Council to support night flight ban

11.6.2010   (Stop Airport Extension Now – SAEN – at Southend)

Ask Council to support night flight ban


There is a full council meeting of Southend Borough Council on Thursday 17th
June at which  SAEN understand that a possible night flight ban may be discussed.
However, this would most likely be for a short period of the night – probably
three hours. This does no-one any good as it will simply push flights into the
remaining part of the night when people will still want uninterrupted sleep.

SAEN are  encouraging people in the area  to write to councillors before 17th June
to let them know  their views on a night flight ban.    If you have the time, a
message written in your own words will be most effective, but SAEB provides a
suggested message below for you to tailor for those in a hurry.

To save you having to type out all 51 councillors’ email addresses, send your
message to

Dear Councillor,

I understand that the full Council meeting of 17th June may discuss a nighttime
ban on flights at Southend Airport. Please take a moment to consider the importance
of any decision on night flights to the many thousands potentially affected.

You have been told that the new mitigation package is the best deal available
i.e. it was this or the virtually unrestricted flying allowed by the current lease.

But the monthly cap of 120 is riddled with exceptions for flights in addition
to emergencies. Military, Government business, police (whether fixed wing or rotary)
and, worst of all, QC (quota count) exempt aircraft. The QC system must be capped
to be workable. Variants of these are 11.5 ton jets converted to carry freight
pallets with an EPNdb of around 85 decibels each. All of these exceptions can
fly in unlimited numbers all night.

Night time hours will not start effectively until 23.30 because an average of
three heavyweight jet passenger flights will be allowed to land in the preceding
30 minutes.

The existing lease does not allow exceptions for jet powered aircraft other than
those specified in the permitted table plus emergencies. Even allowing that the
airport may have no control over police operations the extra exceptions represent
a worsening of the existing arrangements.

Noise preferential routing depends on wind, weather and general safety factors
and therefore has an inbuilt degree of flexibility that will counter any subsequent

We are no better off with these measures and a partial three hour ban will simply
compress activity into the remaining hours available.

The operators say they cannot afford to stay open to service emergencies alone.

So please give us the opportunity for sleep enjoyed by residents at London City
and Southampton with a total ban on night flying with a duration of at least 7.5



see also

more about night flights at Southend on the SAEN website at