Thursday, 19 October 2017

Take-off pattern trials ‘had no effect’

TRIALS of new take-off patterns from Heathrow airport did not cause noise problems in Henley, writes James Burton.

TRIALS of new take-off patterns from Heathrow airport did not cause noise problems in Henley, writes James Burton.

Between December 2013 and November last year, planes leaving the airport were temporarily using different flight paths.

It was part of an experiment conducted by NATS, the UK’s air traffic controller, to see whether this would be quieter or reduce air pollution.

Henley MP John Howell wrote to the Civil Aviation Authority and Heathrow asking whether this was contributing to the problems of noise.

Heathrow said that none of the trials affected the town.



From December 16, 2013 until June 15 last year they only applied to the so-called “Midhurst route” in which planes taking off in an easterly direction turn sharply before flying south over Sussex.

Two further trials were conducted between July 28 and November 12 last year. The first again only affected planes leaving Heathrow in a southerly direction while the other applied to those heading west and which only deviated from the normal route once they had passed the Henley area.

A Heathrow spokeswoman said: “Because of the location of Henley, those in the community did not experience any changes to their noise levels.”

If any changes are to be made to flight paths, they would require the Government’s permission and public consultations would have to be held.

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