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News

Crawley Council object to Gatwick Master Plan after airport says majority of residents approve it.

In a vote held at Full Council the majority voted to object to the proposed plans put forward by Gatwick.

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There seems to be a rift between what the Council think is right and what the residents do.

Only a week ago a poll commissioned by the airport stated that three quarters of residents polled were in favour of the master plan.

But in a full council held last night, the majority vote was against the proposal.

Realistically the result is no surprise as the Council had made their feelings clear in previous years objecting to the second runway.

Interestingly it was only a year ago that the Council voted to allow for the building of the new Boeing hangar, a new hub that would allow maintenance of aircraft from across Europe.  Whilst the hangar would not increase air traffic in the same way, its approval was given after many councillors stated how it would bring much needed jobs and revenue into the area.

So there is a hunger for building, improving and growing resources at Gatwick but not it seems with increasing passenger numbers.

Whilst the majority of councillors who spoke did support Gatwick there was a real concern that the growth proposed would have too much of a detrimental effect on the environment.

Only this morning Gatwick published a press release where they said the airport had seen a 3% reduction in its noise footprint to the previous year.  They said that this was in part to their initiative to modify the A320, an aircraft most used at Gatwick.  They also say that 30% of its fleet will comprise quieter aircraft by 2022.

But these findings have fallen on deaf ears with the council and also objection groups including CAGNE (Communities Against Gatwick Noise and Emissions) who this week demanded that the airport disclose the safety incidents that have already occurred whilst using the emergency runway when the main runway is closed for maintenance.

A Gatwick spokesperson said:

“It is disappointing that the Council does not recognise the economic boost our plans would deliver for future generations, including thousands of jobs, new global connections and opportunities for local businesses. The decision also appears out of touch with the views of residents surveyed across Sussex in a recent independent YouGov poll, who overwhelmingly support Gatwick growing within its existing footprint (74%), with only 16% opposed.

“Local economic prosperity cannot be taken for granted and neither can the important role Gatwick plays in Crawley. While disappointed at this decision, we will consider the views of everyone who responds to our consultation before publishing our final master plan next year.”

 

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