Mr Justice Holgate has refused permission for JR of Southampton airport expansion
Southampton Airport won planning permission to extend its runway in April. Now a High Court judge, Mr Justice Holgate, has dismissed campaigners’ claims that the planned extension of Southampton Airport’s runway would be unlawful. GOESA Ltd (Group Opposed to the Expansion of Southampton Airport) was set up after Eastleigh Borough Council gave permission to extend the runway by 164m (538ft) in April 2021. It said the council was wrong to approve it and in justifying it. But now Mr Justice Holgate declined the group’s claim for a judicial review. If the runway is extended, the airport will be able to handle larger planes, carrying more passengers – the type of planes used by EasyJet or Ryanair to take people on sunshine holidays to Mediterranean beaches and European short breaks. If GOESA does not appeal, then the runway construction can begin. The airport would likely start that next winter, to be ready for the 2023 season.
Southampton Airport runway review claim rejected
Southampton Airport won planning permission to extend its runway in April. Now a High Court judge has dismissed campaigners’ claims that the planned extension of Southampton Airport’s runway would be unlawful.
GOESA Ltd (Group Opposed to the Expansion of Southampton Airport) was set up after Eastleigh Borough Council gave permission to extend the runway by 164m (538ft) in April 2021.
It said the council was wrong to approve it and in justifying it.
Mr Justice Holgate declined the group’s claim for a judicial review.
GOESA Ltd, which was supported by more than 300 residents who pledged money, had a claim for a judicial review dismissed last October but an appeal over that was accepted in December.
A Southampton Airport spokesperson said the latest High Court decision on Monday was an “exciting step forward”, which would secure its long-term viability.
By Paul Clifton, BBC South transport correspondent
For the airport, this is a significant step down its very long attempt to extend the runway.
It wants to be able to handle larger planes, carrying more passengers.
The type of planes used by EasyJet or Ryanair to take people on sunshine holidays to Mediterranean beaches.
This is not necessarily the end of the matter because the losing party still has the right to appeal against this judgement, if it chooses to do so.
If it does not appeal then the runway construction can begin.
The airport would likely start that next winter, to be ready for the 2023 season.
Eastleigh Borough Council’s leader Keith House said the decision was “good news”.
“This now means that the airport can move forward with its plans, save the airport for the future, generate jobs for our local economy and secure tough controls on overall passenger numbers to protect our environment,” he said.
Southampton airport lands a victory as High Court dismisses ‘unlawful’ runway extension plans
Wednesday 25 May 2022 (Sky)
A high court judge has dismissed claims that a council’s decision to approve the runway extension at Southampton International Airport was “unlawful” and will continue to go ahead.
Group Opposed to the Expansion of Southampton Airport (GOESA) was set up following Eastleigh Borough Council’s decision to grant permission for a “164-metre development” of the current runway in April 2021.
Campaigners who worry about increased noise from aircrafts and climate change raised a number of concerns against the runway extension approval and argued the council’s decision was wrong.
GOESA argued residents were waiting for a government decision to be made on whether there would be a public inquiry into the plan.
Barrister David Wolfe representing them told the court residents had a “legitimate expectation” the council would wait to issue a “decision notice” until the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government at the time, Robert Jenrick made a decision on whether to “call in” the application for a runway extension.
He added the council’s decision was “legally flawed”.
Southampton Airport, owned by AGS Airports Limited is located on the south coast of England. The length of the current runway is 5,653ft (1,723m).
Judge Holgate’s decision on legality of Southampton Airport runway extension approval expected soon
A High Court ruling, by Justice Holgate, on whether the decision by Eastleigh Borough Council to grant planning permission for the 163 metre extension of the runway at Southampton Airport was unlawful is expected in the coming days. In April 2021, Eastleigh Borough Council voted to approve planning permission for the scheme. Then this was followed in July 2021 by a judicial review (JR) claim filed by GOESA Ltd – the local opposition group. They say the decision should have been called in, for decision by the Secretary of State, and that Southampton Airport has greatly overstated the economic benefits of the expansion and underplayed the environmental impacts. Following an oral hearing in December, permission was granted for a JR, and this was finally heard on April 27 and 28, with Justice Holgate presiding over the case. The review considered the environmental impacts of the scheme, legal and planning issues and whether the plan should have been called in. The judge said a confidential draft of his decision would be circulated to the QCs and their legal teams in the coming days, with a final version to be made public shortly after.
Southampton Airport runway extension decision set for judicial review
The residents group, GOESA Ltd, that has been challenging plans to extend the runway at Southampton Airport, have won the right to take the matter to judicial review (JR). The judicial review will take place in the New Year, submitting evidence to the High Court, but the date is not yet known. GOESA Ltd is crowdfunding to raise the money for the legal costs. The plans to extend the runway by 164m (538ft) were approved by Eastleigh Borough Council in April. Initially campaigners against the plans had their request for a JR refused by the High Court, but that has now been overturned. Rowan Smith, the group’s solicitor, said: “They will now have another opportunity to convince the court that permission for an expanded Southampton Airport was unlawfully granted and should be reversed.” The airport claims all sorts of economic benefits from the runway extension. The leader of Eastleigh Borough Council hopes the legal processes can happen quickly, so the airport can proceed quickly with its plans, which he claims are good for the regional economy….