Over 4,000 take part in Frankfurt’s 100th protest evening – including supporters from Heathrow and Gatwick

The 4th runway at Frankfurt airport was opened in October 2011. The flightpaths for this runway overfly thousands of residents in the Frankfurt, many of whom had not  previously been overflown. They suddenly found the noise of aircraft overhead every few minutes, relentlessly (day after day, week after week) for most of the day intolerable. Other areas were also affected by changes to flight paths.  Ever since the opening, the people of Frankfurt have absolutely refused to accept this, and have campaigned continuously and relentlessly. They hold unique and remarkable protests, almost every Monday night, in the airport terminal. These are attended by well over 1,000 people, every time. On 19th May,  the 100th airport terminal protest was held, with around 4,000 (maybe more) protesters.  Some campaigners from the Heathrow and Gatwick campaigns went out (by train) to show solidarity and share this remarkable achievement with their German friends. John Stewart, Chair of HACAN and of AirportWatch, addressed the protest, saying they were making aviation history, and the tenacity, persistence and determination  of the opposition to Frankfurt flights is increasingly a matter of concern to the aviation industry.



Below are some photos of the protest, and links to videos.

YouTube film :    This is a video of part of the 2 hour protest, with the speeches. All in German, except John Stewart’s 2 minute address.  Mention of the British visitors to the protest is at about 10 minutes in, and John’s speech at about 11 – 13 minutes in.   http://youtu.be/LVOh_3E3bBw  

This flim is longer and shows more of the  protest     http://youtu.be/Cdk_XQmZiqs

Also another Link to a video on the occasion of the 100th Monday Demonstration against aircraft noise at Frankfurt Airport  http://youtu.be/JTYWrjQHSJ4


This is the Frankfurt theme song

The song the which the protesters sing – loudly – at their Monday evening airport terminal invasions. With a very catchy chorus  “Unsere Forderung wird immer lauter Die Landebahn muss weg” means “Our challenge is getting louder. The Runway Must Go”.


DSCF9513 John and Sally in need of earplugs

John Byng and Sally Pavey, from Gatwick, wishing they had bought earplugs against the din. Most of the Frankfurt participants, (banging drums, tooting whistles, blowing horns, singing ….) take the precaution of the earplugs.  The protests aim to attack noise with noise ….


James and Sally displaying our t-shirts – supporting the Frankfurt protest.

DSCF9507 John Byng with the witches

John Byng from Gatwick with ladies objecting to the aircraft noise, with tambourines, balloons and  wicked hats.

DSCF9511The UK banner sets off to march round the terminal

The Heathrow and  Gatwick banner sets off – with a thousand or so others  – on its not-so-sedate tour around the entire airport terminal complex, with drums, whistles, music and lively  chanting of “Die Landebahn muss  weg”, which means “The  [Frankfurt ] runway must go.”

DSCF9543 Tamsin and Sarah with the banner

Tamsin and Sarah on their turn to take the banner as it joined in the procession around the airport


The German version of the t-shirts of the British visitors.


The English version of the t- shirts of the British visitors


DSCF9528 some of the crowd

Part of the crowd.  Each of the areas affected by aircraft noise has its own placard, expressing their opposition to the noise. “Fluglarm” means aircraft noise.   “Fluglarm macht krank” on a lot of the banners and placards, means “aircraft noise makes you ill.

These ordinary, peaceful, law abiding Germans feel sufficiently furious about the noise that they have kept up these protests for about two and a half years. Many, or most, have turned out almost every Monday – with this the 100th time. They have absolutely no intention of stopping either.

Photo_of_John_S_speaking (3)

John Stewart addressing the protesters, after the presenter gave a warm welcome to the British and Dutch protesters, from Heathrow, Gatwick and Schiphol campaigns, who had come to join in the 100th protest. John said the Frankfurt protesters had made history by continuing to protest for so long. He added that the extent and the determination of the Frankfurt protests have bothered the aviation industry, especially as the opposition to the new runway and its flight paths shows no sign of diminishing.

DSCF9556 Crowd listening to speeches

A small section of the crowd, listening to the speeches. Generally a different area affected by noise help organise the weekly protests in turn, sharing the responsibility and work.

The strength of feeling about the hated aircraft noise is made plain by the sheer scale of the protests. This number of responsible, mild mannered citizens do not take up weekly  protests unless they feel very strongly, and very passionately indeed, about the cause.

DSCF9550 John Stewart with the singing air hostesses

John Stewart with two of the singing air hostesses, who sang lively anti-runway songs.

Plane_hat smaller

Example of creative Frankfurt anti-runway head gear.


DSCF9559_all_the_UK_group_with_friends_at_the_end (1)

The UK group with German friends at the end of the 100th Frankfurt protest

DSCF9565_group_photo_in_restaurant_with_banner_added   1

After supper, with good German beer, and some German-English t-shirt swapping – Heathrow, Gatwick and Frankfurt campaigners  …. celebrating the 100th protest.



Links to videos on the occasion of the 100th Monday Demonstration against aircraft noise at Frankfurt Airport: 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cdk_XQmZiqs 2014-05-19 Frankfurt Airport: 100 Monday demonstration against the expansion, speeches I

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LVOh_3E3bBw 2014-05-19 Frankfurt Airport: 100 Monday demonstration against the expansion, speeches II 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzy4_2Jbd00 2014-05 -19 Frankfurt Airport: 100 Monday demonstration against the expansion, Terminal Demo I 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7yTKgfoUwk 2014-05-19 Frankfurt Airport: 100 Monday demonstration against the expansion, Terminal II Demo 

https:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-YD99wp5js 2014-05-19 Frankfurt Airport: 100 Monday demonstration against the expansion, demo in front of Terminal I




More news about Frankfurt and the protests at    Frankfurt Airport