Application for a Certificate of Lawfulness for Dunsfold Aerodrome refused by Waverley Borough Council


On  6th July, Waverley Borough Council refused the application by Dunsfold Aerodrome
for a Certificate of Lawfulness.
The Aerodrome had sought permission to continue with unrestricted flying, with
no limitations or conditions.
Waverley has totally refused that.
The Aerodrome’s application was for:
Certificate of Lawfulness under Section 191 use of the application land as an
aerodrome for aviation activities, including for the start up, taxiing, engine
testing, ground running, take off and landing of aircraft, without condition,
restriction or limitation as to:

Number of aircraft

Number of take offs and landings

Type of aircraft (whether fixed wing or rotary civil or military, commercial
or private, training or non-training, and whatever the origin or destination of
the flight)

Size of aircraft

Weight of aircraft

Number of crew and passengers

Type and amount of freight


Period of use (hours, days, nights, weeks, weekends etc)

Surface traffic generation

Number of employees employed on or off the application land or persons generally
on or off the application land

Noise, air quality other emissions and environmental effects

or otherwise.
Waverley Planning Portal
A local campaigner has interpreted the legal wording of the letter, written by
a barrister, into plain English – below:
The refusal is carefully worded ; it covers all the  points but avoids contentious
statements  which could give  grounds for appeal.
To summarise, the reasons for refusal are
1. The application land was at 1st July 1948 part of a maintenance depot which
no longer exists: parts of the original are now a multi-use business park. There
is no continuing right to use the application land separately  from the original
whole for flying activities
2. The uses claimed in the application are materially different from those existing
at 1st July 1948
3. There was a material change of use  in 1951 when Hawkers implemented the consent
of 13 April 1951. (For “erection repair and flight testing of aircraft”)
4. That consent was required by law in view of the change from a maintenance
depot to manufacturing.
5. That consent was a permanent permission and there was no further  change for
the duration of Hawkers/BAE’s occupation.(ie until about 2002.) The flying activities
during this period were part of the use   authorised by that consent.
6.  The use of  Dunsfold has materially changed since 2002 and parts are now a business park
with no connections to aviation.
7. The 1951 consent does not authorise a change of use of the application land 
as distinct from the whole for general aviation activities unrelated to design
development flight testing assembly production and maintenance of aircraft.
8. The changes of use since 2002 have been authorised by a  series of planning
consents for example for light and general industrial purposes and storage.
9. Those  consents impose conditions, and use for the purposes claimed in the
application would breach  these  conditions.
10. Expiry of  various temporary  consents does not mean any reversion to the previously
subsisting use claimed.
I  suspect the refusal was drafted by counsel.
There  is also  an officer’s report to the  Council  from  Cameron Stanley the
case officer  (44 pages)  which expands on the above. It is available on WA/2010/0520

Thursday, 07 July 2011
see also older news:

Campaigners step up Dunsfold Park fight due to threat of unrestricted flights

11th May 2011     A warning ‘wake-up’ call has been issued to all Waverley residents to act now
to stop Dunsfold Airport. Dunsfold Park currently has a cap of 5,000 annual ATMs
but it has submitted an application for a lawful development certificate (LDC)
for unrestricted aviation. Owners hope to reactivate the underlying aviation consent
to make it commercially viable. FoE have produced a good briefing on what needs
to be done. Dunsfold have got top planning lawyers, who won at Farnborough, to
make their case.
Click here to view full story…

More objections to Dunsfold Park flights plan
15.4.2011    The prospect of Dunsfold Park being transformed into a new airport
with unrestricted private flights has sparked a rising number of local objections.
Parish councils representing the villages most directly affected are considering
seeking specialist legal advice due to the implications. The airfield claims a
permanent planning consent, granted in 1951 for unrestricted flying, still stands
and means the current cap of 5,000 annual flight movements carries no weight.


Jet airliners could land at Dunsfold Park

25.1.2010    A warning that jet airliners could soon be landing at Dunsfold airfield
has just been issued by prospective Guildford Lib Dem MP Sue Doughty. She believes upgrades
to bring in Boeing 737s and 757s for repair were already well on the way. Dunsfold
Park Ltd chief executive Jim McAllister said the company’s immediate focus would
be to progress the site’s underlying permanent aviation and business consent following
its failed bid to build 2,600 ‘green’ homes.
Dunsfold is an Airport under the Airports Act 1986. It has its licence for the
purpose of levying charges, but it does not have a CAA licence for carrying passengers.



and Dunsfold Aerodrome