Leeds Bradford Airport News Stories
New NEF report shows the climate impact of regional airport plans has been considerably underestimated
See original image in the Guardian article here
For UK to properly take account of the overall climate impact of UK aviation – it needs to consider the emissions from departing AND arriving flights (it currently ignores arriving flights). And also the non-CO2 impacts on climate. Maximum impact is multiplier of x3 (shown here). The multiplier could be x2.
A report by the New Economics Foundation (NEF) says the climate impact of expansion plans at regional airports in England has been dramatically underestimated and would threaten the UK’s legally binding climate commitments. NEF calculated that proposals to expand 4 airports (Bristol, Leeds Bradford, Southampton and Stansted) will lead to an increase in CO2 emissions up to 8 times higher than the airports previously claimed. This means the alleged economic benefits claimed, from more aviation, were overestimated, as they ignore around £13.4bn worth of climate damage the extra flights could cause. Alex Chapman, the author of the report, said the findings raised concerns about the level of scrutiny the airport expansion proposals had received from government. Alex said: “The secretary of state should step in and conduct an independent review of all four of these proposals and their compatibility with the UK’s climate targets.” The airports all use unproven and undeveloped technologies to achieve future fuel-efficiency savings. Most airports only took account of CO2 of outbound flights, not of inbound flights, and ignored the non-CO2 impacts of flights.
Plans for expansion of Leeds Bradford airport put on hold – after government direction – giving time for a decision to “call in”
The government has issued a direction to Leeds City Council, preventing councillors from granting planning permission for Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) expansion, without special authorisation. This means the expansion of LBA is now on hold. The direction preventing councillors from granting planning permission – set out in section 31 of the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2015 – will give further time to Robert Jenrick, the Communities Secretary, (MHCLG) to consider whether to formally “call in” the planning application for a public inquiry. The plans to build a new terminal building on the green belt had been given conditional approval by Leeds City Council in February, despite widespread opposition from local MPs, residents and environmental groups. Campaigners argued the expansion would make a mockery of efforts to tackle the climate crisis and undermine the government’s credibility ahead of a key climate conference later this year. The issue is of more than local importance, and a full public inquiry – chaired by a planning inspector, or lawyer – would mean all the evidence being properly considered. The inquiry would then make its recommendation to Robert Jenrick, to make the final decision.
Letter from nearly 80 organisations and groups urges Leeds Bradford Airport decision be ‘called in’
Nearly 80 West Yorkshire community groups, environmental organisations and councillors from all parties have urged the decision on Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) to be ‘called in’. Signatories of the letter to Robert Jenrick, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, include Bradford councillors, Shipley Constituency Labour Party, Thornton, Allerton and Sandy Lane Branch Labour Party, Keighley and Ilkley Green Party, Bradford Green Party, Clean Air Bradford, Bradford Green New Deal, Baildon and Shipley Friends of the Earth, Extinction Rebellion Bradford, Shipley Town Council and more. The Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport (GALBA) has asked the Secretary of State to hold a public inquiry because they say “there are significant effects beyond LBA’s immediate locality and there is substantial cross-boundary and national controversy; these issues have not been adequately addressed by Leeds City Council; and airport expansion conflicts with national policies on important matters”. The UK needs a proper national policy on airports, airport expansion, and carbon emissions. The CCC has said there must be no net airport growth, but many airports plan to expand – none plan to contract.
Alex Sobel MP tells government to stop Leeds Bradford Airport’s new £150m terminal
The MP for Leeds North West, Alex Sobel, has told the government it needs to dramatically intervene to stop the building of a new terminal at Leeds Bradford Airport. The airport is in his constituency. He has asked the Secretary of State, Robert Jenrick, to call in the decision made by Leeds City Councillors to approve plans for a new terminal. The expansion plans are intended to increase the number of flights and passengers, and therefore the amount of noise and carbon emissions. Mr Sobel has been a long-time critic of the airport’s plans. He has pointed out that the expansion plans are not in keeping with the advice of the Committee on Climate Change, to limit aviation expansion, in order to reach UK carbon targets. He said: “I do not believe that a local plans panel of 14 councillors is in any way a competent body to be making a decision of this significance. Applications which significantly affect the carbon budget must be made nationally. We need a national aviation plan and significant measures to reduce net emissions from UK flights. I look forward to seeing these in the Government’s response to the Committee on Climate Change’s Sixth Carbon Budget Report.”
GALBA’s Response to Leeds City Council Plans Panel’s Confirmation of LBA Expansion Approval
11.3.2021 (Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport)
Despite councillor after councillor expressing unhappiness at the conditions offered by LBA, it looks like threat of an appeal by the airport was the reason why Leeds City Council’s Plans Panel confirmed its approval of Leeds Bradford Airport’s planning application. We are disappointed but not surprised by that decision. GALBA remains committed to protecting the health of our climate and our communities by stopping airport expansion. We believe the decision should be considered at a public inquiry where the climate, noise, health and economic impacts can be properly and thoroughly investigated. Alternatively, we will challenge the Council’s decision in the courts. We have the resources and the determination to continue our campaign for as long as necessary.
Leeds Bradford Airport terminal recommended for final approval – but old building could remain standing
A new document has shown Leeds Bradford Airport may not be able to demolish its old terminal building if/when a replacement is built, as it contains much of the site’s crucial infrastructure. As part of a Leeds City Council’s recent in-principle acceptance of the rebuild last month, members wanted the ageing terminal building to be demolished as soon as possible once the new one was built. But a document set to go before the panel next week claims the airport cannot do this, as it currently contains the airport’s air traffic control tower, fire station, IT, communications, security, safety and mechanical infrastructure These are needed for the airport to maintain its aerodrome licence, but the airport says it has committed to creating a “masterplan” to get rid of the site in the longer term. The report, set to go before the Council’s plans panel on 11th March. It said: “The existing terminal will not be used by passengers which is restricted in the proposed (planning) agreement….[it] houses some of the Airports critical operations…” The airport’s management offices are also included in the terminal building, as well as Jet2’s staff offices.
Open letter from 246 University of Leeds academics, to Robert Jenrick, asking him to “call in” the Leeds Bradford decision
246 University of Leeds staff (including 46 professors and associate professors) ,and postgraduate researchers have signed an open letter, asking Robert Jenrick (Sec of State) to ‘call in’ the decision on Leeds Bradford Airport. The government should take responsibility for the decision, which is of national importance because of the increased carbon emissions and their impact on UK carbon commitments. The academics say expanding LBA’s passenger numbers by 75% exceeds the maximum rate of growth that the Climate Change Committee considers compatible with the UK’s legally adopted net-zero target. It would make it much more difficult – and more costly – for the UK to achieve its climate targets and would require reductions in passenger numbers elsewhere in the UK. “In the year that the UK is hosting the COP26 conference, it is vital that we show leadership on climate change and take the necessary actions to secure a safe, zero-carbon future. We therefore urge you [Robert Jenrick] to call in this application so that the issues highlighted are considered in light of national and international climate targets and associated guidance.” The alleged economic benefits of the expansion, or jobs created, would be unlikely to materialise.
Government should call in Leeds Bradford airport expansion plans, due to climate impact
The government is under growing pressure to halt a proposed expansion of Leeds Bradford airport, which critics say would wreck efforts to tackle the climate and ecological crisis and undermine the government’s credibility ahead of the COP in Glasgow in November. The expansion would allow an increase in passengers from 4 to 7 million per year by 2030. It was recently given conditional approval by Leeds city council despite widespread opposition from local MPs, councils, residents and environmental groups. Lawyers have written to Sec of State Robert Jenrick asking for the decision to be “called in.” A Leeds University climate scientist, Jefim Vogel, says the airport expansion would only benefit “relatively few people”, and would contribute towards a global climate catastrophe. The Leeds Council decision illustrated how many councillors don’t fully comprehend the severity and urgency of the global climate situation. Jefim told councillors: “If we allow the climate crisis to escalate, it will make the COVID crisis look like a bed of roses. The climate crisis stands above short-term economics. Millions of lives and livelihoods and the safety of human civilisation are at risk.” The emissions from flights using the expanded airport would dwarf those of the rest of the city.
GALBA has written to Sec of State, Robert Jenrick, asking that the Leeds Bradford airport application is “called in”
On 11 February, Leeds City Council (LCC) provisionally approved a planning application to expand Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA), despite the Council having declared a climate emergency in March 2019. Now anti-airport expansion campaign, the Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport (GALBA), has written – through their Barrister, Estelle Dehon – to Robert Jenrick, the Secretary of State at DCLG, asking him to ‘call in’ the decision on LBA. If he agrees, the airport’s planning application will be dealt with at a public inquiry. GALBA believes that LBA expansion is the aviation equivalent of the Cumbria coal mine case. There are striking similarities: a local authority decision which would result in significantly increased greenhouse gas emissions and which flatly contradicts the latest advice to government from the Committee on Climate Change in the 6th Carbon Budget. One of the key reasons that Leeds councillors felt able to support airport expansion is because their planning officers told them that international aviation emissions are not a matter for local authorities to consider in the planning process. GALBA believes that is legally incorrect and reserves the option of challenging LCC in the courts. The planned expansion raises the type of issues where consideration at national level, by the Secretary of State, is required.”
Leeds City Council approves Leeds Bradford airport plans for new terminal (ie. more passengers, more carbon, more noise)
Leeds City Council has approved (subject to additional conditions still to be negotiated) Leeds Bradford Airport’s plans for a larger terminal to accommodate more passengers. This decision will entrench in the Leeds economy the growth of a carbon intensive industry. There is no certainty that the promised jobs will actually materialise, as the sector increasingly automates work. Objectors including climate scientists, transport experts and residents’ groups, warned such an expansion would help facilitate catastrophic climate change, as well as unbearable levels of noise pollution for those living close by. The application sought to demolish the existing passenger pier to accommodate a new terminal building and forecourt area. This would also include the construction of supporting infrastructure, goods yard and mechanical electrical plant. There are also plans to modify flight time controls, and to reduce the night-time flight period, with a likely increase from 5 to 17 flights between 6am and 7am. A professor of transport planning said there are inadequate contributions to road and rail infrastructure. Local group GALBA says there could still be a legal decision against the proposals.
Open Letter to Leeds City Council – MPs, Councillors, Scientists and Community Groups ask them to oppose Leeds Bradford airport expansion
An open letter has been sent to Leeds City Council (LCC) councillors, written by local opposition group GALBA & supported by 114 various groups, councils, organisations, residents’ associations and climate scientists. They ask the council to decide (on 11th February) against allowing expansion of Leeds Bradford airport, by NOT allowing the building of a new terminal. The work is designed to increase passengers from 4 million a year to 7 million by 2030. The letter says: “Expansion would mean health damaging increases in noise, traffic and air pollution for thousands of people in our local communities. Above all, it would mean a huge increase in greenhouse gas emissions exactly when we need to cut them to prevent the worst effects of the climate crisis. Expansion would be fundamentally wrong. Leeds City Council has declared a Climate Emergency and aims to reach net zero carbon by 2030. Yet from 2030 onwards, aircraft from an expanded airport would pump out more greenhouse gases than the whole of the rest of the city. Allowing LBA to expand would immediately make the Council’s own net zero target impossible.”
Leeds Bradford Airport expansion decision soon – there have been almost 2,000 objections
A final decision is set to be made on the future of the Leeds Bradford airport at a meeting on 11th February, on the proposals for a new £150m terminal.The new terminal that would allow more annual flights and passengers, and thus higher carbon emissions. Over 1,950 objections to the plans have been submitted, and around 1,200 in favour of it, including (predictably) the West and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce. Environmental campaigners and climate academics had warned flights in and out of Leeds needed to dramatically reduce in order to help humanity have a fighting chance of averting climate catastrophe in the coming years. Council planning officers have now set out their recommendation in a report to the authority’s City Plans Panel that suggests they approve the blueprints, albeit with 50 conditions on the developers. Several councils have opposed the plans, and Bradford West MP Naz Shah, Bradford East MP Imran Hussain and all 5 Leeds Labour MPs have also raised concerns. Local campaign group The Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport (GALBA) has been fighting the plans for several years. Airports like to confuse the issue, with how low-energy their airport buildings will be, trying to pretend the flights are nothing to do with them.
Leeds Bradford Airport expansion could COST region £3.1bn over 26 years, claims think tank
The think-tank, the New Economics Foundation (NEF), has worked out that the proposed expansion of Leeds Bradford Airport could cost the region up to £3.1billion in lost economic activity by 2050. The plans would enable the airport to handle 7 million annual passengers, up from around 4 million in 2019. Most passengers will be on low cost leisure flights. The claims by the airport ignore the huge loss to the UK because people who fly abroad on holiday do not spend that money in the UK. The airport also claims (as all airports always do) that the expansion will create many new jobs. In fact, the aviation sector becomes increasingly automated, with fewer and fewer jobs per 1,000 passengers – and this has accelerated through the Covid-19 crisis. NEF says: “The predicted business benefits are overstated, because businesses are making less and less use of air travel, especially in the fallout from coronavirus.” Also that: “With the leisure and hospitality industries on their knees, this expansion would damage the local recovery from the Covid pandemic.”
Extinction Rebellion to protest in Leeds against Leeds Bradford Airport expansion plans
Socially-distant protesters plan to gather in Millennium Square on August 29 in support of the Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport (GALBA). GALBA will be cycling a route around Leeds, Bradford and Wakefield to highlight areas which may be affected by aircraft noise pollution if the airport’s expansion plans are approved. Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) submitted plans to build a new “state of the art” £150million terminal in early 2020. It would be closer to a proposed parkway rail station, announced by Leeds City Council last year. The terminal would accommodate seven million passengers per year by 2030. Extinction Rebellion (XR) has held several protests this year against the expansion plans, both outside Leeds City Council’s Civic Hall headquarters and outside a public consultation meeting held at the Mercure Parkway Hotel. XR says the proposed expansion, yet to be approved by the council, will increase carbon emissions – fuelling climate change. One activist said: “I will be able to look my daughter in her eyes and tell her I tried to put an end to this madness, that we knew there was a better way to live and I fought for it with everything I had.”
Young climate activists urge council to reject Leeds Bradford Airport development – “Don’t let us down”
‘DON’T let us down’ was the plea being made by young climate activists who are calling on Leeds City Council to reject plans for a new airport terminal. Leeds Bradford Airport is seeking permission to create a new, £150 million building to replace its current terminal which dates back to the 1960s. Environmental campaigners say the terminal flies in the face of attempts to tackle global heating. Leeds YouthStrike4Climate (Leeds YS4C) have sent an open letter to the city council’s leaders which reminds them that they declared a Climate Emergency in March, 2019. The expansion plans would make it ‘impossible’ for Leeds City Council to keep its promise to make the city carbon neutral by 2030. There will also be a lot more plane noise pollution. Leeds climate striker Annwen Thurlow said: “Our house is already on fire – we cannot let this expansion add more fuel. The council has a responsibility to protect our health and wellbeing, of people and planet. Young people in Leeds and across the world are relying on them. “So we say to them – please don’t let us down.”
Leeds Bradford Airport: Scientists object to expansion plans which will increase CO2 emissions
A group of five climate scientists have objected to Leeds Bradford airport’s expansion plans as they make it “impossible” for Leeds to meet its greenhouse gas emissions target. The airport wants to build a new terminal, but this would mean more flights and more passengers, and so more carbon emissions. The scientists said the expanded airport’s greenhouse gas emissions would be higher than the emissions allowed for the whole of Leeds in 10 years’ time. The airport could cause the emission of 1,227 kilotonnes of greenhouse gas emissions in 2030, compared to 1,020 kilotonnes allowed for the whole of Leeds in 2030. One of those objecting is Prof Julia Steinberger, a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which advises the United Nations. The IPCC has warned that restricting global warming to 1.5˚C above pre-industrial levels will require “rapid and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society”. The scientists say expansion would just represent “business as usual” and lock in higher CO2 emissions. “If similar developments were replicated around the world, it would lock us into catastrophic climate change, which highlights that the proposed development is not only highly harmful but also unfair.”
Natural England says Leeds Bradford Airport expansion should not be approved – necessary details have not been provided
The government’s environment adviser, Natural England, says Leeds City Council should not approve controversial plans for the Leeds Bradford Airport expansion, unless further evidence on the potential impacts is provided. Natural England states the airport’s planning application lacks detail and “there is currently not enough information to rule out the likelihood of significant effects” on the environment. It has asked the airport to provide additional information, so the council can asses the impact the new £150 million terminal would have on air quality, local wildlife and protected landscapes. Natural England therefore advises Leeds City Council that it should not grant planning permission at this stage. The airport wants to increase passengers numbers from 4 million to 7 million a year. Climate scientists, environmentalists, The Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport (GALBA) and four Leeds MPs are also calling on the council to reject the new plans. GALBA, said the airport has not bothered to assess the damage that their expansion plans would do to wildlife and nature.
Leeds Bradford Airport CEO says the plan is about modernising not expanding
Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) has been planning to expand, building a new terminal that would allow more annual flights and passengers – and thus more CO2 and more noise. The plans have been fiercely opposed. Now, with the airport effectively closed for months, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the chief executive has written that the plans are not about expanding. He says the building plans are to improve and modernise the terminal, and “LBA is not expanding because we are not proposing to grow beyond the airport’s existing consented capacity limit of 7 million passengers. Our present limit is already 7m passengers and LBA is not proposing to increase that limit.” He claims planes are now so (allegedly) “quiet” that tight noise restrictions are not as relevant as years ago. There is the usual stuff about the airport aiming to be carbon net zero by 2023 – which is lovely, though it excludes the carbon from flights, making it somewhat irrelevant. The CEO comes out with all the usual industry platitudes about “clean” planes, and “sustainable” fuels, and future electric planes … none of which mean much. And cycle routes to the airport …
Leeds Bradford airport submits plans for new terminal building & more passengers (4m to 7m a year) despite Covid fall in demand.
The airport has submitted a planning application to Leeds City Council, to replace the current terminal building with a new one by 2023, to increase passenger numbers from 4 million a year to 7 million a year. Opponents to the plans say that will make the climate emergency “worse” and that the current pandemic means there’s “no need” for it. Local people, in Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport (GALBA) say the expansion will increase CO2 emissions, at a time when countries around the world are being urged to drastically then. It will also bring more noise for local communities, increased air pollution, and more traffic congestion. Instead “We need to rebuild a healthy economy in Leeds. We don’t need an unsustainable development like this.” Leeds City Council declared a climate emergency in 2019, but conveniently does not include the CO2 emissions from the airport’s flights in its carbon budget. But the flights alone would exceed Leeds’ entire carbon budget by 2035. The airport is trying hard to persuade the Council that its expansion is needed, in competition with Manchester, and the (alleged) economic benefits it would bring would be huge. Will it be able to afford £150 million, now there is the Covid fall in demand?
Leeds Bradford Airport expansion could now be in doubt – if the landmark Heathrow climate case can be used against it
The ruling on Heathrow’s 3rd runway on 27th February, by the Court of Appeal, put the scheme seriously in doubt – on the grounds of its carbon emissions. The DfT had decided not to take proper account of the extra carbon emissions, in relation to the UK’s commitments under the Paris Agreement, when it produced the Airports National Policy Statement . The ruling is ground-breaking, because it sets a global precedent that can now be used to challenge other developments which damage the environment. The expansion plans of Leeds Bradford would result in a possible increase in passengers from about 4 million per year now to about 7 million. This means the plans are not considered large enough to require the National Policy Statement and DCO route. Instead the application goes through the usual planning process. So the Heathrow ruling may not have a direct bearing on this case, though the principle of the need to properly account for carbon emissions from new developments, may be used to argue against it if it went to appeal. Leeds has declared a climate emergency, and its local Citizens’ Assembly resolved that the airport should not expand, due to its carbon emissions.
Kirklees council urged not to back Leeds Bradford expansion plans – due to climate impact
Kirklees Council leader has been urged not to back the use of public money to help the £41 million expansion of Leeds Bradford Airport. The call came from Kirklees Greens leader, Cllr Cooper, who says pumping £5 million into a proposed new rail interchange – the Leeds Bradford Airport Parkway scheme – would inevitably increase international flights and could undermine regional carbon emissions targets. Such a commitment of public money, increasing carbon emissions at a time of climate crisis, was foolhardy. The airport’s expansion plans are being considered by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA), a group of leading councillors and officers from West Yorkshire councils, plus York, that works on major infrastructure projects. The rail interchange would include a new railway station on the Harrogate railway line and associated access works, assisting access to the airport. The scheme is being promoted with claims it will improve air quality … slightly dubious reasoning there … Cllr Cooper: “Kirklees Council cannot ignore the impact of air travel and the threat it poses to all the actions that we need to be taking to reduce global emissions.”
‘Lives will be blighted’ by £150M Leeds Bradford Airport plans say protesters after ‘die-in’ at meeting
Leeds Bradford is planning to expand, spending £150 million on a new terminal that would allow more annual flights and passengers. Local residents object to the plans as an ‘abdication of responsibility’ and claimed an eco-friendly terminal would be pointless if the numbers of flights increased, as this would massively increase CO2 emissions. The Council meeting had been suspended for 20 minutes due to protests from climate campaigners, locking themselves to railings and holding a die-in. As well as the terminal, the airport wants to reduce the night period with no flights by 90 minutes, so instead of the current 8 hours of quiet at night, there would just be 6 and a half hours. The airport wants to start work in winter 2020, with an opening in 2023. “If we have to go to carbon offsetting, that is what we will do.” The airport is terrified of not growing. The extra noise will blight the lives of thousands of residents under the flight paths. The decision by the Leeds Council City Plans Panel was to take no view on the pre-application and ask the Airport for further information.
Leeds Bradford Airport wants to cut night-time period by 90 minutes to just 11.30pm to 6am
Leeds Bradford Airport wants rules that impose a range of night-time flying restrictions to be relaxed, so it can operate more flights. The current restrictions, since 1993, are that the airport can only operate 4,000 flights a year during the night-time period, which is 11pm to 7am. Now the airport wants the night-time period reduced from 8 hours to 6.5 hours, so it is from 11.30pm to 6am – an hour and a half less. The WHO says people should have a quiet period for sleep for 8 hours per night. Most adults need between 7-8 hours of good sleep per night. That is not possible, if the night period is only 6.5 hours. That also does not include planes arriving later than 11.30pm, for delays etc. The change the airport wants means lots of flights in the “shoulder periods”. ie. between 6am and 7am, and between 11pm and 11.30pm. This enables airlines to fit in more “rotations” so they can make more return trips to European holiday destination airports, making more money for airlines. The plans will be discussed by Leeds City Council’s on January 30th; the airport may submit a planning application in the coming months.
Leeds Bradford Airport link road plans scrapped
Plans for a new link road to Leeds Bradford Airport have been scrapped because of a lack of public support. The decision comes after climate change activists held a protest against airport expansion proposals. But Leeds City Council said it had “taken on board” feedback from residents and its decision was not made because of “climate lobbying”. Other plans, which include a railway station and bus terminal, are due to be discussed at a meeting on 7 January. A councillor said due to public feedback, they were taking forward proposals for a parkway station, investing in sustainable public transport infrastructure, and this would “help to take cars off the roads”.
Leeds Citizens’ Jury on climate change recommends NOT expanding Leeds Bradford airport
Leeds recently held a “Climate Change Citizens’ Jury” on climate change, with 21 “jurors”. It was put together by the Leeds Climate Commission, with jurors selected through a process to make it representative of a “mini-public” of Leeds, with varying different views. The Jury was tasked with examining the Leeds’ response to the emergency of climate change and with producing recommendations that will be used to guide the future work of the Commission and a range of organisations across Leeds. The jury started in September, and ran for a total of 30 hours over 9 sessions, ending in early November. The findings, in the form of recommendations written by the jurors, have been presented at a launch event on 25 November 2019 and will be presented formally to Leeds City Council’s Climate Emergency Advisory Committee in January 2019, which can make formal recommendations to Leeds City Council’s executive board. One of the recommendations was that Leeds Bradford Airport should not be expanded, with a vote for that by 86% of the jury. They said residents should be informed about the impact of expansion on carbon emissions, and flying should be discouraged, for example by higher taxation through the Frequent Flyer tax.
New station among big plans for Leeds Bradford airport
The public will have their say on proposals to improve transport connectivity to Leeds Bradford Airport, including plans for a new railway station nearby. Senior councillors on Leeds City Council’s executive board have agreed a recommendation to carry out public consultation and engagement on proposals to improve road and rail access to the airport to support its future growth, as well as job creation in the area and addressing current congestion issues in north west Leeds. The council working with West Yorkshire Combined Authority, Leeds Bradford Airport and key stakeholders has put forward key investment proposals for a new airport parkway rail station, located on the existing Leeds-Harrogate Line, with a short connecting spur road to the airport to provide a shuttle bus connection similar to that at Luton Airport. This would also serve as a park and ride service for destinations on the Leeds-Harrogate Line and beyond. Also improving road access through one of three options. And releasing 36 hectares of land next to the airport for employment growth and job creation in north west Leeds. All of the key details on the proposals to be considered together will be available in the consultation, to take place early in 2019.
Newcastle Airport’s part owner (49%), Australian AMP Capital, buys Leeds Bradford Airport
The Australian investment group which owns almost half of Newcastle Airport has bought another airport in the North, Leeds Bradford. AMP Capital, which took a 49% stake in Newcastle Airport in 2012 (51% is owned by 7 local authorities in Tyne and Wear, Northumberland and County Durham), has bought Leeds Bradford outright – after buying it from European investment group Bridgepoint. AMP Capital say the airport offers a “highly attractive investment and a great fit for its global infrastructure platform”. It is likely that a competition probe could take place on the deal, with one company potentially having a major stake in two Northern airports whose target markets have some crossover. Though theoretically serving a larger population area, Leeds Bradford is currently smaller than Newcastle Airport, with many people in Yorkshire choosing to fly instead from Manchester. Newcastle recorded 4.8m passengers in 2016 compared to Leeds Bradford’s 3.6m.
Consultation on flight path changes at Leeds Bradford airport – ends 6th October
A public consultation (ends 5th November) is under way into air space changes around Leeds Bradford Airport. The departure routes will not change, but aircraft will climb quicker, reducing plane noise to some of those under the flight paths. The airport says that to provide improved spacing between arriving and departing aircraft and greater efficiency of operation, the new procedures require additional airspace within which to manoeuvre aircraft. Some new areas would be overflown. After the consultation, the airport will submit its application to the CAA, which has 17 weeks to reply. Once approval is achieved, LBA will complete controller training with the changes set to be implemented from autumn next year. The proposals affect Class G airspace, and would significantly concentrate flight paths – so some local residents will be blighted with considerably more noise then they experience today whilst others may benefit. The documentation claims that the change in airspace proposed will not automatically mean an increase in air passenger numbers and aircraft movements but then refers readers to the airports development plan published elsewhere which clearly states their ambition to grow passenger numbers to 7 million per year by 2030 (from around 3.5 million now).
Leeds Bradford airport currently have an Airspace Change Proposal (ACP)
They are attempting to increase the amount of controlled class D airspace around the airport on the premise that the extra airspace is required to allow for changes in both arrival and departure procedures.
Their proposal creates significant choke points for other air space users, degrading the safety of those in Class G airspace around the outside of the proposed class D and at the same time states that the new procedures will significantly concentrate flight paths – so some local residents will be blighted with considerably more noise then they experience today whilst others may benefit.
The documentation claims that the change in airspace proposed will not automatically mean an increase in air passenger numbers and aircraft movements but then refers readers to the airports development plan published elsewhere which clearly states their ambition to grow passenger numbers to 7 million per year by 2030.
The GA (General Aviation) community, local gliding clubs and hang gliding / flex wing enthusiasts operating in northern England stand to be greatly affected by the proposals.
Respondents have until 6th of October 2017 to make their views known.
Link to the ACP proposal http://www.leedsbradfordairport.co.uk/media/2643/lba-acp-consultation-document-issue-2.pdf .
Link to the LBA Development Plan 2016 to 2030 http://www.leedsbradfordairport.co.uk/about-the-airport/airport-masterplan
Greenbelt campaigners vow to campaign against Leeds Bradford Airport link road plans
Campaigners say large swathes of unspoilt greenbelt land will be seriously damaged and traffic congestion exacerbated if a proposed link road for Leeds Bradford Airport is built. They say a link route running from the A65 in Rawdon – through unspoilt green belt land – will not serve any beneficial purpose, arguing the case for building it has not been made. They are asking people to visit and sign up to saveleedsgreenbelt.com, a new website set up to protect green space around the city. Leeds City Council is working with Leeds Bradford Airport and the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to take the link road proposal forward. The council says no final route has been chosen and that the issue will go out for full consultation. But campaigners are gearing up to fight the proposal. Opponents are not persuaded that the traffic implications have been worked out properly. They want the council to produce evidence to back up its claims. One of the council’s stated ambitions is to increase the use of public transport (by building another road?) and hope to eventually get a rail connection.
Leeds Bradford airport expansion plans need 36.2 hectares of green belt land owned by Leeds Council
Expansion plans have been unveiled for Leeds Bradford Airport to enable it to bring in double the amount of passengers over the next 15 years. The proposals would see Leeds Council releasing 36.2 hectares of greenbelt land in and near to the airport. It would be used to increase the passenger terminal building and develop an airport village, including a hotel, restaurant and shops. The plans would also result in new flight destinations being introduced. Leeds Bradford airport currently handles around 3.3 million passengers per year but its forecasts show a potential to increase that to 7.1 million by 2030. The plans include an air innovation park to attract research and development companies and an air freight park for improved cargo handling. Leeds Council said releasing the council-owned land would help businesses grow and bring in new jobs and skills. Better transport connections including a new link road are also being looked at. The proposals will be discussed at a meeting of the council’s executive board on 15 July, and if approved, they will go out to public consultation later in the year. The airport was bought from local councils in 2007 for £145.5 million. Although Bridgepoint Capital own the airport 100% financially, the councils hold a “special share” in the airport, to protect its name and continued operation as an air transport gateway for the Yorkshire region.
Leeds Bradford still hopeful of airport rail link after Minister Robert Goodwill visits
May 2, 2014
New aviation Minister, Robert Goodwill. has visited Leeds Bradford airport and commented that a new rail link to the airport is “obviously desirable”. Mr Goodwill was at the airport for a whistle-stop tour, as part of a day of discussions with council and business leaders. One of the items to discuss was the possible improvement of road and rail links to the airport. This has been under discussion for several years. The local paper reports that “The Minister is visiting regional airports across the country in the wake of a new Government study, which has identified the six national congestion hotspots most in need of investment.” He said he could understand why the airport is so keen to get improved rail links, to ease travel. But quizzed on if and when the Government would be ready to invest in the region’s airport, he said he was “rather reluctant to put a timescale on that decision”. “We have to look at other airports and priorities as well….. There is a study ongoing and it will depend on the price tag, the deliverability and planning issues.” At present most people go to Leeds Bradford Airport by car or by taxi.
Moving Leeds-Bradford International Airport branded ‘fanciful’
6th April 2014
Business leaders, backed by Bradford Council leader David Green, have shot down the ‘fanciful’ idea that Leeds- Bradford International Airport should be relocated. Bradford Breakthrough, which represents 32 senior private sector and public sector leaders, says it wants the airport to stay at Yeadon – and that investment should be made in better transport and infrastructure links. Bradford Breakthrough members have unanimously opposed the idea of moving the airport following calls by the leaders of Leeds and Wakefield councils for a new regional hub to be developed on another site. The possibility of a new airport – probably located to the south of Leeds near the proposed HS2 route – was first mooted earlier this year.
‘Vital link’ to Pakistan from airport may go if operator decides to axe direct flights
12th April 2014
Pakistan International Airlines could be on the verge of pulling out of Leeds Bradford Airport – leaving the area without any direct flights to the sub- continent. The airline, which is reported to have suffered from financial problems and scandals in recent years, is considering suspending its flights from LBIA to Islamabad after May 15. The shock news comes less than three years after the area previously faced losing the important long haul connection. The crisis in 2011 was averted after two weeks of intensive negotiations between PIA, airport chiefs and Bradford’s then Lord Mayor Naveeda Ikram. The airline’s flights from Leeds Bradford could be suspended within weeks. The threat to the twice-weekly service is already hitting passengers who are being told they cannot book flights from Leeds Bradford to Islamabad after May 15 because the route may be suspended. PIA launched the flights in 2008 to replace a short-lived Shaheen Air International service which was axed due to problems with plane availability. Click here to view full story …
Probe of surface transport links to Leeds Bradford airport
8th April 2014 (Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
A study to look at improving links to Leeds Bradford Airport has been ordered by the Department for Transport. Transport links to the airport have already been included in a Treasury list of six “notorious and long-standing road congestion hotspots.” A Treasury report – Investing in Britain’s Future – which was published last year, said further feasibility studies were needed into the six hotspots.
Now the DfT has appointed transport planners WSP, in partnership with Parsons Brinckerhoff, to carry out a study to examine options for improving connections.
The study, which is expected to be finished by early August, aims to identify ways of ‘substantially’ improving the links to surrounding areas. The study will take account of intentions to ‘grow’ the airport and will identify ways of improving ‘surface access’ to help it achieve its aim.
It will look at roads, public transport and “other sustainable modes.” WSP says consultation and liaison with local authorities and key stakeholders will underpin the study.
Dr David Ingham, Chairman of Wharfedale and Airedale Review Development, spoke out after serious traffic congestion on roads near the airport. Dr Ingham said: “Imagine a serious plane accident and fire at the airport. How long would it take for emergency vehicles to come to the airport’s assistance? There would without doubt be serious consequences.”
Revised Public Safety Zone at Leeds Bradford airport – public consultation
Pakistan International Airlines has still not switched to less noisy planes for Leeds Bradford night flights
March 27, 2013 Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) have repeatedly broken noise limits at Leeds Bradford airport, and it is meant to have changed to less noisy planes. However, the introduction of these planes has been postponed. PIA is meant to have switched to Boeing 777s on its services to Islamabad from earlier in March. There have been 8 breaches of night time rules over the previous 12 months. Two years earlier the council had served a breach of condition notice on the airport. Improvements were made but after a further eight breaches councillors said they wanted a commitment on timescale. Earlier councillors had agreed to support the approach of continued dialogue rather than formal action. Click here to view full story…
New BA flights 4 times per day from Heathrow to Leeds Bradford
December 13, 2012 Direct flights between Yorkshire and Heathrow have been reinstated with the first BA service after an absence of 32 years,using a A319. There will be 4 flights per day, and the region’s business community is said to be enthusiastic, as it provides quicker access to Heathrow’s 170 destinations around the world. Tony Hallwood, commercial director at LBA, said: “It opens up the region to the rest of Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas. Flights on the new route, which take 80 minutes, cost from £55 one way, including taxes. The Chamber of Commerce Chief Exec said “These new BA services connect Yorkshire to the whole of the world through Heathrow – and now the whole of the world will find it easier to get to Harrogate.” The airport wants to increase passenger from 3 million to 3.5 million over the next 18 months or so and to 4.5 million within the next 5 years.” Click here to view full story…
More breaches of night noise limits at Leeds Bradford by Pakistan International Airlines
December 13, 2012 Pakistan International Airlines has breached night-time flying rules at Leeds-Bradford Airport. It has had 8 breaches of night-time rules in the last year. It is now being asked by Leeds City Council to give a formal commitment to introduce quieter planes, and timescale for doing so. Two years ago the Council served a breach of condition notice on the airport after warning that further contraventions by Pakinstan Airlines would not be tolerated. Improvements were made, but there are still breaches. Councillors agreed to support the approach of continued dialogue rather than formal action at this stage. At Leeds Bradford there is a restriction of planes at night that have a noise quota count greater than 1. LBIA is reviewing the designated night-time quota period of 2300—0700 as it wants to make the night period shorter, from 2330-0600. Click here to view full story…
Yorkshire-Heathrow flights restored after 18-month interval
27.6.2012 British Airways opens Leeds Bradford-Heathrow route after period in which carriers withdrew link twice in as many years in what some people regard as an encouraging move for the region’s economy. British Airways will run four services a day between Leeds Bradford and Heathrow from 9 December, ending a period of uncertainty which has seen the link broken twice in as many years. Details …
“More geese may have to be culled” at Leeds-Bradford Airport
February 16, 2012 The airport’s operations director says more geese may be culled to ensure the safety of planes. He said urgent action was needed from time to time, and recently met with residents protesting against the killing of geese at Yeadon Tarn last year. He said measures such as egg picking were already in place – but sometimes it was necessary to react quickly to a particular problem. The airport already used scaring tactics to deflect the geese but had a duty to ensure safety. “We have got to be prepared if suddenly a flock of geese descend and set up a roost somewhere in the locality, and then decide to fly across the airport. We have got to be able to deal with that.” Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford Airport bosses vow to change Canada Geese cull
February 7, 2012 Airport chiefs, who ordered a cull of 10 Canada Geese at a Leeds beauty spot, YeadonTarn, have said they find other ways to control the population. There was no local consultation about the cull beforehand.Food and Environment Research Agency officers shot the flock, which was deemed “a significant risk to aircraft”, in September by closing the green space to dog walkers in the early hours. Plans for an £11million expansion of the airport, which could be completed by this summer, had sparked further fears of culls. A meeting took place recently between the airport and angry local residents. Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford Airport ‘selling a pup’ over plans for expansion
December 13, 2011 Councillors in Leeds have accused the airport of ignoring communities living near the airport. The airport had around 2.8 million passengers in 2008, and around 2.7 milion in 2010, and want to increase the number to 4 million per year. They are now building at the airport to provide a new departure lounge, more shops, a large walkway to the aircraft etc. Councillors say there will be no additional infrastructure to support the expected big increase in passengers, and the road traffic congestion that would bring. Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford Airport embarks on £11m upgrade
Huddersfield Daily Examiner 8.12.2011
BOSSES at Leeds Bradford Airport have unveiled plans for an £11m investment in passenger facilities. More than 100 construction workers will be involved in the project, which is due for completion next summer. The airport said the upgrade would create capacity for a further million passengers a year – taking its annual total to 4 million. The scheme includes creating a new departure lounge, a new range of food and drink outlets, more shops, a large walkway to the aircraft next to the terminal building and an increased security office. Details …..
Leeds Bradford Airport may be affected by high-speed rail
13th August 2010 In his evidence to the House of Commons Transport Select Committee on 26th July, Philip Hammond said that Flights from Leeds Bradford Airport and Manchester Airport are likely to be affected if a high-speed rail link is introduced, and the need for domestic air services will be cut. These changes would have a transformational effect on the UK economy. It will also reduce the number of services to Amsterdam from regional airports. Click here to view full story…
Further breaches at Leeds Bradford airport ‘won’t be tolerated’ by council
Leeds Bradford Airport under scrutiny over late-night flying
Call to speak out over draft airport noise action plan at Leeds Bradford
Ryanair opens new base at Leeds Bradford airport
21.12.09 Leeds Bradford boss wants more Air France – KLM routes
15.12.09 Jet2 launch next winter’s schedule
03.12.09 Flybe and MP argue on domestic flights
Leeds MP – Colin Challen – war of words over flight ‘ban’
4th December 2009 Budget airline Flybe has accused MP Colin Challen of putting tens of thousands of jobs at risk after he launched a campaign for a ban on domestic flights. Flybe flies to 5 destinations within the UK from Leeds Bradford accused the MP of “headline-chasing of the worst kind” and living in an “ivory tower”. Colin told the firm to “wake up to the reality of climate change and stop bleating”. He has tabled an EDM to phase out domestic flights in 2010. (Post) Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford Airport told cut staff car travel or face fines
8th September 2009 Leeds Bradford Airport bosses could face tough financial penalties if they fail to persuade more of their staff to get to work by car sharing or on public transport by 2012. A travel plan drawn up for the airport sets targets to limit the number of single occupancy car journeys people make to get to work. At least 30% of staff employed by the company that runs the airport should get to work using transport other than single occupancy car. (Yorkshire Evening Post) Click here to view full story…
20.11.09 Profits plunge for Jet2 owner
19.11.09 Jet2charters busy Hajj flights
13.11.09 Leeds Bradford ‘will be the only airport to grow next year’
18.10.09 Leeds Bradford Airport denies councillors ‘more noise’ claim
23.09.09 Flybe launch early summer routes from Leeds Bradford Airport
03.09.09 Thomas Cook add Leeds Bradford routes
31.08.09 Jet2 to add Leeds Bradford – Bergerac flights
30.08.09 Over 40,000 to fly from Leeds Bradford Airport
28.08.09 Flybe to add early morning Leeds Bradford – Gatwick flight
12.08.09 Ryanair announce Leeds Bradford base
Leeds Bradford – Jobs created by new Ryanair base
12th August 2009 Ryanair is to set up a base at Leeds Bradford, allegedly creating hundreds of jobs. O’Leary said the announcement would have a “significant impact” on the Yorkshire region – and sustain 1,000 jobs. The airport is on course to almost double in size after planners recently gave permission for a £28m development. Ryanair will offer 14 new routes and 63 weekly return flights to and from Leeds Bradford in an investment of over £84m in the airport. (BBC) Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford Airport expansion plans approved
Plans to extend Leeds Bradford, which would double its capacity in 5 years, have been backed by Leeds councillors. The proposals include a £28m extension to the terminal building, a new departure lounge etc. In April the council rejected an original plan due to concerns over the impact on roads around the airport. Projections show the airport’s expansion plans mean it would consume all of Leeds’ carbon budget by 2050. 80% of letters to Leeds City council were against the expansion. (BBC) Click here to view full story…
‘Wrong time for expansion’ at Leeds-Bradford
£28 million expansion plans given the go-ahead this week by Leeds councillors.
Chief executive of Jet2.com accused LBIA’s owners Bridgepoint (which bought the
airport at the top of the market) of planning the terminal extension mainly to
boost shopping facilities to recoup the £140 million it paid, and he believes
the extension could push up costs for his company and others. (Telegraph &
Argus) Click here to view full story…
Threat of Leeds Bradford airport expansion is back!
expansion proposal will be considered once again by Councillors on Thursday 23rd
July at Leeds Civic Hall. “No Leeds Bradford Airport Expansion” hopes to convince
councillors to oppose it again. Access to the airport is poor, and an expansion
in passenger numbers of 70% in 5 years would create unacceptable local road congestion
– as well as environmental damage. Click here to view full story…
Minister: “Leeds Bradford – London flights are capital idea”
flights from Leeds Bradford to London will be taking off again this summer. Flybe,
Europe’s largest regional airline, is launching a new 3 times daily service to
the capital. The airline has stepped in to reconnect Yorkshire travellers and
Gatwick following rival bmi’s decision in March to axe its flights to Heathrow.
(Yorkshire Evening Post) Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford expansion grounded
use the airport, and the planned new terminal would have handled up to 5 million.
That the plans have been shelved is a great piece of news, because it shows that
there’s no inevitability to airport expansion plans – the environmental arguments
against ever-increasing numbers of flights are so strong they can trump corporate
profit or government dictat. In a very short timeframe, campaigners assembled
a coalition to highlight the environmental impact of an expanded airport, and
as a result of their hard work, the number of objections to the scheme went from
0 to 800 within just two months………… Click here for full blog
Setback for LBA expansion bid as opponents make their voices heard 16th April 2009
AIRPORT bosses’ plans of starting a multi-million pound programme to swell passenger
numbers at Yeadon have suffered a major setback. Leeds Bradford International Airport (LBIA) wants to carry out the first phase
of a £28 million project by adding a two-storey extension to its main terminal
– a move which could help attract five million passengers per year (compared to
the current 2.9 million) by 2012. click here for full story…
Controversial Leeds-Bradford airport plan stays grounded
could have on roads in the area after getting more than 900 letters of objection.
The proposed terminal extension is part of a £70m investment programme that Bridgepoint Capital intend to carry out over the next 5 years. Panel members said they could not give the scheme their backing at this stage Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford Airport’s £70m expansion plan under threat in transport clash
17.4.2009 Plans to expand Leeds Bradford have been kicked into touch. The airport wants
to increase passenger numbers to 5.1 million a year by 2016. Planning councillors
unanimously agreed to defer their decision. They indicated broad support for the
expansion, but criticised the airport’s transport blueprint for failing to tackle
key issues. These included transport links from Leeds. The plans will now be discussed
again by councillors at a later date. (Yorkshire Post) Click here to view full story…
Leeds Bradford International Airport unveils terminal development proposals
terminal. LBIA’s terminal development proposals reveal a two storey extension
to the landside face of the existing terminal, together with internal modifications
to the current building. This major investment by the airport’s shareholders,
Bridgepoint, follows their purchase of the airport in May 2007. LBIA will shortly
prepare a planning application. (Routes online) Click here to view full story
Leeds airport terminal project will go ahead despite economy
pound terminal redevelopment will go ahead as planned. John Parkin has told the
YEP that a formal planning application will be submitted in early 2009. Bridgepoint
has pledged to invest £70m on a major modernisation of the airport and the plan
is to grow passenger numbers from their current 3m to more than 5m by 2012/2013.
(Yorkshire Evening Post) Click here to view full story…
06.12.08 Profits double at Jet2
02.12.08 Jet2 boss confident on growth
13.09.08 Jet2 announce record profits
31.08.08 Jet2 boss says trading ‘strong’
21.08.08 Jet2 announce 4 new routes
10.08.08 Jet2 and isango sign new deal
03.07.08 Leeds Bradford appoint new chairman
29.05.08 Jet2plus UK roll out
17.05.08 Jet2 release winter ski flights
04.05.08 Jet2 launch eight new summer routes
All articles in reverse date order