St Albans fights Luton Airport's increased night flights
PUBLISHED: 15:19 14 February 2013 | UPDATED: 15:19 14 February 2013
A ST Albans campaign group formed to fight Luton Airport's expansion push has joined counterparts county-wide to launch a petition calling for a significant drop in night flights.
Residents only have until Monday February 18 to lodge comments on the airport’s plan to double passenger numbers to 18 million a year.
Local groups including Hertfordshire Against Luton Expansion (HALE), Save Our Skies St Albans (SOS) and Luton and District Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise (LADACAN) have banded together to argue that as Luton is a city airport, it should be regulated as such.
Under the proposed expansion plans, flights at night would increase by around 50 per cent, with about 80 flights between 11pm and 7am in peak summer periods.
Spokesman for the groups Andrew Lambourne, of Flamstead, said that local residents have complained about nuisance noise from planes during the evening, as it is keeping children awake and disturbing sleep in the early hours.
He said that the World Health Organisation links night noise nuisance with ill health.
Other airports located near big towns or cities have night noise curfews.
Andrew said that submitting a planning application proposing to double the late night arrivals between 10pm and midnight and starting early departures at 5am showed that Luton was not taking people’s concerns seriously.
MP for Hitchin and Harpenden Peter Lilley, along with politicians in neighbouring areas, has voiced his support for the petition, the link for which can be found at the top right of this page.
Harpenden town council is urging residents to submit comments on the application, before it is too late.
The scheme is on Luton borough council’s website – application number 12/01400/FUL
Cllr Nicola Linacre, Harpenden Mayor, said: “The airport expansion is going to have a significant impact upon Harpenden. We therefore want to ensure that residents are aware of what is being planned and where possible comment accordingly.”