Anti Gatwick Runway & Noise Groups Go To 10 Downing Street
23rd March 2015
Cabinet Member offers support for residents today (23rd March) as the anti-Gatwick groups came together to hand in a joint statement to Number 10 Downing Street
Photograph above taken today (23rd March) outside Number 10 Downing Street is of the local campaign groups representing residents from East Sussex, West Sussex, Kent and Surrey, with four senior MPs – Sir Nicholas Soames, Sir John Stanley, Crispin Blunt and Nick Herbert – where a joint statement opposing Gatwick expansion and the changes to flights paths was handed in to the Prime Minister.
Representatives for residents groups were CAGNE West Sussex; John Byng GACC; Simon Byerley of Gatwick Obviously Not and CAGNE EAST – East Sussex and Kent; Ian Hare of PAGNE Pulborough; Mike Ward Plane Wrong Surrey and Jane Vogt GACC and Kent.
Six local campaign groups opposed to Gatwick expansion and four senior MPs called on the government today to recognise the devastating impact of a second runway at Gatwick, the lack of local political support and the strength of feeling among local residents against changes to flight paths already in and out of Gatwick. The anti-Gatwick groups representing individual residents, resident groups, Parish Councils, environmental organisations, and with the MPs, represent millions of residents in this joint statement to the Prime Minister.
Rt Hon Francis Maude MP and Cabinet member said of the visit to Downing Street by residents, which sadly he was unable to attend due to other commitments:
“Since Gatwick started a trial of intense focusing of flight paths over rural areas in my constituency last year, I have been dealing with many hundreds of distressed constituents. Local residents who have for years tolerated moderate aircraft noise because it was spread out were horrified to find that the concentration of aircraft over a narrow flight path made their lives a misery.
“It is hard to see how the area could accommodate the vast increase in noise and disturbance, together with doubling the usage on the already overburdened infrastructure, that a second runway at Gatwick would entail.”
The Downing Street visit organised by the chair of CAGNE (Communities Against Gatwick Noise and Emissions).
Speaking about why the groups were coming together today, CAGNE said:
“We were delighted to be joined by so many senior MPs and to have the support of those that were unable to attend as it shows the anger that is felt over Gatwick’s proposals to expand and how people are already being affected by changes to flight paths now.”
“A two-runway Gatwick would devastate the local area and local communities.
Throughout this process, we’ve been hugely disappointed with Gatwick’s lack of consultation with the local area. CEO Stewart Wingate continues to portray the airport as an ‘easy option’ for expansion, while ignoring the concerns of thousands of local residents and that it will cost the taxpayer billions in infrastructure bills and the devaluation of vast areas of the south-east with aircraft noise.
It’s time people realised the truth. Gatwick expansion will destroy our local environment, push local services beyond their limits and expose up to 30,000 people to noise for the very first time, all facts ignored by Gatwick’s CEO.”
“If Gatwick refuse to hear us, we hope the Prime Minister and those in government will.”
Crispin Blunt MP and Chair of the MP group that opposes Gatwick expansion commented:
“The unremitting noise pollution being suffered by residents underneath new concentrated flight paths at Gatwick (now), following the implementation of Precision Navigation in 2013-14, has galvanised local residents groups around Gatwick to stop take-off and landing routes that create unmitigated noise pollution to residents.
“The united message being delivered to the Prime Minister today is that changes to Gatwick’s implementation of Precision Navigation are needed urgently and the last thing local people need is a new runway at Gatwick which would subject thousands of new people to aircraft noise.”