Tom Tugendhat letter to Aviation Minister – on need for…

tom-tugendhat-letter-to-aviation-minister-–-on-need-for…

Tom Tugendhat letter to Aviation Minister – on need for…

Tom Tugendhat letter to Aviation Minister – on need for proper scrutiny of Gatwick future main runway growth
2021-07-29 15:59:00
The expansion that Gatwick might perhaps eventually be allowed, by using its emergency runway as a full runway, would require proper scrutiny through the planning Development Control process (DCO). The airport might be able to handle up to an extra 50,000 annual flights by doing that.  However, more expansion and more extra annual flights could be added, by making more use of the single main runway.  That might add another 60,000 annual flights (about 16 million annual passengers).  But because there would be no physical building work required (no extra runway length or extra terminal) there would be no planning permission needed, and no chance for public scrutiny of the impacts of the gradual expansion. Now Tom Tugendhat (MP for Tonbridge & Malling) has written to Robert Courts, the Aviation Minister, to ask for a meeting to discuss this anomaly. He says the main runway growth would be “more than the aggregate growth at the 5 UK airports that are currently seeking expansion.  In each of those cases the proposed growth has been robustly scrutinised and communities have been able to have their say. The government cannot simply ignore the greater impacts at Gatwick because it has different planning position.” .Tweet   Letter copied below Letter to Robert Courts MP Parliamentary Under Secretary of State Department for Transport Great Minster House 33 Horseferry Road London SW1P 4DR 28th July 2021 Dear Robert, You will be aware of the extensive correspondence you have had with Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign (GACC) regarding the proposed main runway growth at Gatwick. I have been copied into much of it and have seen responses on the Department to GACC. Two things clear from that correspondence. First that government policy requires any significant growth at an airport to be robustly scrutinised so that its benefits and its adverse impacts can be assessed, and an informed decision made. That is clearly right and I welcome it. Secondly, that there has been no such scrutiny in relation to Gatwick’s proposed main runway growth, of some 16 million passengers per annum. Furthermore the government appears to have no current plans to ensure the scrutiny its policy requires will happen. That cannot be right. I understand of course that Gatwick’s planning position is different from other major airports, and therefore that no automatic planning enquiry is triggered by its main growth plans.  However, that does not excuse the government from ensuring its policy is delivered. I als

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