CAA’s Gatwick flightpaths review ‘failed to end misery’

Brendon Sewill ENGSUS00120131001155923
Brendon Sewill ENGSUS00120131001155923

Anti-Gatwick expansion campaigners have said a Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) review on controversial changes to the airport’s flightpaths failed to ‘end misery’ for residents.

The CAA’s review on the departure routes which it approved in August 2013 concluded a path which takes off to the west and turns north had to be changed; a route towards the south-coast and another heading east were acceptable but should be reviewed by Gatwick; the remaining six routes did not need to change.

Brendon Sewill, chairman of Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign, said: “It is a great disappointment that the CAA have rejected proposals for reducing the misery caused by new flight paths.

“In a 198 page report they devote only 2 pages to the possibility of dispersal – spreading the aircraft over a wider area – and to the possibility of respite – giving people a break from constant noise. And then reject both. We will now need to take the case to the Government and indeed will raise this when we meet the Minister for Aviation, Robert Goodwill MP, next week, on November 18.”

A GACC statement said the changed routes had caused ‘great distress’ for resident living directly under them. The paths were concentrated on ‘very narrow’ tracks because aircraft switched to satellite navigation.

It added the CAA review would only change is to the route which takes off to the west, and then turns right over Holmwood, Brockham and Reigate.

Protest group Plane Wrong has opposed the route over noise pollution.

Mr Sewill added: “It is also disappointing that the CAA do not even mention the possibility of compensation. If a new motorway is built near your home, you are legally entitled to compensation for the loss of its value. The same should apply when a new motorway is created in the sky.”

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