Still unknown if Bristol airport will appeal against expansion refusal – they have to decide by 19th September
Bristol Airport has not yet decided whether to appeal against a decision to refuse its expansion plans. North Somerset Planning and Regulatory committee councillors went against the council officers’ recommendation earlier this year, to reject the expansion plans which would have allowed the airport to increase its current capacity from 10 million to 12 million passengers per year. The councillors ruled that environmental and societal impacts outweighed the economic benefits of the expansion. The airport has 6 months in which to appeal, and that time ends of 19th September 2020. A spokesman for the airport said a decision on whether to lodge an appeal had yet to be made and was still under review. The decline in air travel demand will be a factor in the decision. The costs of a public inquiry could run into tens of thousands of pounds for North Somerset Council. It has confirmed it will defend any appeal but said it was unable to comment on any potential costs. It would be for the Planning Inspector who is overseeing the case to decide what costs and conditions to impose on North Somerset Council, if it loses.
Update on whether Bristol Airport plans to appeal expansion refusal
Airport bosses have until mid September to lodge an appeal
By Heather Pickstock – North Somerset reporter (Bristol Live)
26 JUN 2020
Bosses at Bristol Airport say no decision has yet been made on whether to appeal against a decision to refuse its expansion plans.
North Somerset Planning and Regulatory committee went against their own officers’ recommendation earlier this year to reject the expansion plans which would have allowed the airport to increase its current capacity from 10 million to 12 million passengers per year.
During the debate – which lasted four and a half hours – councillors ruled the environmental and societal impacts outweighed the economic benefits of the expansion.
The decision then had to go back to the same committee for ratification, with the airport given six months to appeal.
The cut off date for the airport to submit an appeal is September 19, it has been revealed.
A spokesman for the airport said a decision on whether to lodge an appeal had yet to be made and was still under review.
A Bristol Airport spokesman said:”The decision risks putting the brakes on the region’s economy and shutting the door to international trade and tourism at a time when the UK needs to show it is open for business.By preventing Bristol Airport from meeting demand for air travel from within the region it serves, the council will simply exacerbate the situation which already sees millions of passengers a year from our region drive to London airports in order to fly, creating carbon emissions and congestion in the process.
“We are reviewing North Somerset Council’s reasons for refusing the planning application and will make a decision on our next steps.
The costs of a public inquiry could run into tens of thousands of pounds for North Somerset Council.
The authority has confirmed it will defend any appeal but said it was unable to comment on any potential costs.
The appeal system operates on the basis that all sides meet their own expenses. The costs incurred by the council depend on the nature on the grounds of appeal, the amount of evidence the council needs to prepare, the length of the appeal and legal fees which would be incurred.
Appeals can be a very costly process for councils especially if the planning inspector decides to uphold the appeal and overturn the council’s decision to refuse.
It would be for the Planning Inspector who is overseeing the case to decide what costs and conditions to impose on North Somerset Council if they disagree with its decision.
There is also a danger if the decision is overturned that North Somerset Council loses its powers to enforce any conditions on the applicant when it comes to the development.
A planning inquiry for an application of this size could take several weeks with witnesses and experts called to give evidence for both sides.
There is a chance the Secretary of State may decide he wants to have the final say in the decision.
If this is the case the planning inquiry will still go ahead but the planning inspector will make a recommendation to the Secretary of State and the final decision will then be in his hands.
Bath and North East Somerset Council rejects Bristol Airport application to increase night flights in summer months
Bath and North East Somerset Council has rejected an application by Bristol Airport to increase the number of night flights. The airport wants to increase the number of night flights to 4,000 throughout the whole year, starting in summer 2021. Currently the airport is allowed 3,000 night flights throughout the summer months and 1,000 in winter. The airport wants to be able to move some of their winter allocation to the summer, when demand is higher. Bath and North East Somerset Council rejected the application – stating it would have a negative impact on people living in towns near the airport. The request for more flights comes after the council opposed the expansion of Bristol Airport in March 2019. Then in March 2020 North Somerset Council threw out the plans, (which included increasing passenger numbers by an extra two million each year and building more car parks) on the grounds they were “incompatible” with the council’s declaration of a climate emergency. The extra night flights would cause noise nuisance to people in both councils.
Bristol Airport expansion plans rejected by North Somerset council by 18-7
North Somerset Council’s Planning & Regulatory Committee has gone against the advice of their own planning officers and have refused permission for Bristol Airport to expand. It has been a “David versus Goliath” battle of local campaigners against the airport, (owned by the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan). The airport wanted to expand from 10 million to 12 million passengers per year, with large carpark and other building. The opposition to the plans was huge, on ground of carbon emissions, as well as noise and general local damage. There were almost 9,000 objections sent in by members of the public, against 2,400 in favour. Councillors voted 18-7 against the plans, with one abstention. Councillors were persuaded that paltry economic benefits to the airport and airlines were far outweighed by the environmental harm. There would be large land take for the parking, and the extra carbon emissions would make targets of carbon neutrality for the area unachievable. Because the councillors went against the officers’ recommendations, the decision will return to the same committee to be ratified. If the decision is ratified, the applicant has six months to lodge an appeal, which would be heard at a public inquiry.
Plans to expand Bristol Airport accused of being flawed; decision put off till early 2020
A decision on Bristol Airport’s major expansion bid will not be made this year. They submitted proposals to boost passenger numbers from 10 million to 12 million a year by the mid-2020s, and to expand the airport’s on-site infrastructure. A decision had been due over the summer but people are continuing to comment – there are currently about 3,780 objections and 1,800 letters of support. Reasons for opposing the expansion include climate change, traffic levels, air pollution and noise. When they declared a “climate emergency”, Bath and North East Somerset Council members also voted to oppose the airport’s expansion, amid concerns about increased congestion on rural roads in their area. There is also doubt about alleged economic benefit. The airport and its supporters always talk up the possibility of more jobs, and improved “access international export markets.” In reality, the majority of air passengers are on leisure journeys. The application will be considered by North Somerset Council’s planning and regulatory committee meeting in 2020, with possible dates the 22 January, 19 February and 18 March.