Campaign group calls for fresh review over plans for flight path changes from Stansted Airport


- Credit: Archant

A campaign group is calling for a fresh review into proposed changes to flight paths across the region.

The Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) group is opposed to the plan to switch more daytime flights to a route from Stansted Airport to Clacton, flying over north Essex and south Suffolk.

It has been put forward by air traffic control organisation NATS in a bid to reduce flight congestion on the London to Dover corridor.

NATS has now submitted its proposals to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) for approval.

But SSE has written to the CAA to highlight what it says are shortfalls in the NATS consultation process.

It says NATS is still seeking approval despite objections from more than 82% of those who responded.

In its letter to the CAA, SEE says the figures presented by NATS for benefits of the changes were neither fair nor accurate.

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These figures related to the claimed reductions in flight delays, CO2 emissions and the number of people adversely affected by overflights and noise.

Martin Peachey, noise adviser for SSE, said: “From the local perspective around Stansted Airport, there is no doubt that residents overall would experience more overflying and associated noise exposure.

“SSE wants the CAA to look at this whole issue afresh.

“The shortcomings in the application of the airspace change process need to be satisfactorily resolved before any final decisions can be made.”

A NATS spokesman said: “The 12-week consultation NATS carried out last year regarding a proposal to change the use of two existing departure routes at Stansted Airport, was conducted in accordance with CAA guidelines.

“It sought to determine whether there was any relevant information that had not been considered in drawing up the proposal. However, the responses received highlighted no issues that had not already been taken into account.

“Therefore NATS submitted the Airspace Change Proposal to the CAA on November 19 and it is now their decision whether or not to approve it.

“If approved the change will be implemented in December 2015.”