Council says 'no' to Stansted expansion

THOUSANDS of people would be at “significant” risk of having their idyllic lifestyles shattered if plans to build a second runway at Stansted Airport are given the go-ahead.

Dave Gooderham

THOUSANDS of people would be at “significant” risk of having their idyllic lifestyles shattered if plans to build a second runway at Stansted Airport are given the go-ahead.

Babergh District Council has warned that the Suffolk environment and the quality of life for its residents could be put at risk by the controversial expansion plans.

A report, discussed by councillors this week, sets out the fears and recommends lodging a formal objection to the proposals which would almost treble passenger movements every year.


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The plans come just months after residents were told they could be living with the prospect of an aircraft every two minutes over their homes if flight paths are moved.

Campaigners last night welcomed Babergh's stance and said there would be an enormous impact on the entire county if the second runway was approved.

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Frances Bee, who has led the campaign against the flight path changes by NATS, said: “I think the second runway is an even greater threat as it would mean doubling the size of Stansted.

“The impact on flying over Suffolk would be enormous and it would be felt all over the county. I am delighted to hear that Babergh are objecting formally to it.”

The proposals, which are contained in four planning applications referred to as the G2 Airport Project, would enable the airport to increase its annual aircraft movements from 274,000 to almost 500,000. Passenger levels would be increased from 24 million every year to 68 million by 2030.

While admitting there could be some employment benefits within the Babergh district, the council report claims this is overshadowed by the negative impact on residents.

It reads: “In terms of increased volume of air traffic, it is inevitable that those within the flight paths will experience increased noise pollution.

“Wider effects may also be detrimental, particularly in respect of CO2 emissions and global warming. A further concern is the likely impact of traffic generation on roads within Babergh (including Sudbury).”

Plans for the second runway have already been met with opposition by Suffolk County Council, Braintree District Council and Mid Suffolk District Council.

However a spokesman for Stansted Airport has previously said it is their belief that they can develop a second runway in a sustainable way.

BAA has also said expansion would create more than 13,000 jobs by 2030 and bring an extra £9bn into the UK economy.

Babergh's strategy committee will discuss the plans on Thursday .

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