Monday, 17 June 2019

Heathrow flights may avoid town in future

RESIDENTS of the Henley area are being asked their views on future flight patterns to and from Heathrow airport as it gears up to expand.

The airport, which plans to build a £14 billion third runway after getting the Government’s approval in 2016, has launched a public consultation which closes on March 4.

It is seeking people’s opinions on take-off and landing paths both after the new runway is built and on possible changes to the existing arrangement.

This could include changing flight paths so that aircraft bypass Henley and the surrounding villages and instead fly over Maidenhead and Marlow and further out towards High Wycombe and Hemel Hempstead.

At the moment, the town lies 4,000 ft beneath the turning point for flights as they land during easterly winds. Planes first head westwards over the Thames Valley then apply their air brakes and turn sharply.

Henley MP John Howell has received numerous complaints about noise from aircraft turning or repeatedly circling overhead while waiting for a landing slot in a process known as “stacking”.

He has encouraged people to respond to the consultation and hopes the airport will abolish stacking.

The consultation is part of a wider modernisation strategy which the airport’s owner Heathrow Airport Holdings says will improve punctuality, reduce carbon dioxide emissions and ensure capacity to meet future demand.

It is proposing a new landing procedure called “independent parallel approaches” which would allow more efficient use of the existing two runways.

To take part in the consultation, visit https://

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