Residents to monitor plane noise

By Benedict O'ConnorRESIDENTS who claim their lives have been made a misery by the noise of planes passing over their homes are to compile a report about the disturbance.

By Benedict O'Connor

RESIDENTS who claim their lives have been made a misery by the noise of planes passing over their homes are to compile a report about the disturbance.

About 130 people attended a meeting called by Tim Yeo, the South Suffolk MP, to discuss how to combat the noise caused by the re-routing of planes heading to and from Stansted Airport.

Residents from the Sudbury area said they were suffering increasing disturbance from the planes and claimed tourism in Suffolk could suffer as a result.

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Speaking after Friday's meeting at Sudbury Town Hall, Mr Yeo said the residents had decided to log the frequency of flights and compile a detailed record of when the noise occurred to present to airport authorities.

"One of the main concerns arising from the meeting was the sense that people feel they have not been given the full facts about the height of planes over Suffolk and the frequency, and such facts as have been provided are quite widely questioned by local residents," he added.

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Flight paths were changed in March to direct air traffic from the Dedham Vale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

But the move has affected people living in Sudbury and the Box and Stour valleys, but Mr Yeo said the concerns were also shared by people living as far afield Ipswich.

"I think most people acknowledge that we are very fortunate to have Stansted Airport and it is of great benefit to the region and much more convenient than the other London airports, and everyone accepts that it is here to stay, whatever happens with the new runway," he said.

"It is accepted that there is going to be some price to pay for that, but what I think the feeling was that the price is currently too high and a balance needs to be struck.

"People would like to see is some sort of load-sharing, very few people could expect to have the flightpaths totally changed, but it was felt that we could try to urge some dispersal so one area is not bearing the brunt."

Mr Yeo added he would be contacting airport authorities to obtain more detailed information about the frequency and height of flights, which has an effect on the noise generated and which he said many people had been unable to obtain so far.

Sudbury mayor, John Sayers, said there were also concerns in the event of an accident about a high volume of planes flying over the densely-populated area of Sudbury and Great Cornard rather than open countryside.

He added there were other environmental concerns and Sudbury Town Council was attempting to obtain equipment to measure the level of noise caused by the planes.


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