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Robin Hood Airport- Noise

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					                              Robin Hood Airport- Noise


As reported at the last Parish Council Meeting, this matter had been raised by the
Parish Council Chairman, Gordon Brown, to be discussed at the Bassetlaw District
Council’s Parish Council Liaison Group Meeting to be held on 6th November. The
following is the report which was produced on the night by Environmental Health
department. It was also agreed that the Bassetlaw representative on the Airport
Consultative Committee, Cllr Izzard should be asked to attend the next Liaison Group
Meeting.

In the meantime it is critical that all residents report excessive noise to the airport
hotline or via email – details of which are shown at the end of this article.

The Parish Council will continue to pressurise the appropriate bodies to put adequate
controls in place.

Gordon Brown, Chairman, Mattersey Parish Council

Legal Position

Noise arising from the operation of commercial airports is controlled by conditions
applied through its planning permission. (Aircraft noise is specifically exempted from
action under the Environmental Protection Act, which prevents Environmental Health
taking any statutory noise nuisance action)

The airport is situated within Doncaster MDC’s district so the Planning Authority
responsible is Doncaster, rather than Bassetlaw.

An Airport Noise Monitoring Sub Committee exists, consisting mostly of officers and
Councillors from Doncaster, but including a representative from Bassetlaw
Environmental Health. The committee exists to challenge and recommend but has no
legal power to enforce against the airport (that is the Planning Authority’s role)

As Bawtry is situated immediately to the south of the runway and bears the brunt of
the noise from aircraft movements in the south, the interests of Bassetlaw residents
are well represented by the Bawtry Councillors.

Noise Controls

As part of the Planning permission, the airport has adopted a Quiet Operations
Policy, the parts of this policy which mainly impact on Bassetlaw residents are as
follows.

      Restrictions on training
      Preferential Runway Use – preferred take to the north and landing from the
       north.
      Noise Preferential Routings – minimising the over-flying of built up areas.
      Night Flying Policy limiting operations at night by the noisiest aircraft,
       including a penalty scheme.
      The operation of a noise-monitoring scheme.
      Operating a sound insulation Grant Scheme.
      Maintaining a public noise complaint handling service.
More Detail.

Restrictions on Training- at night, on Sundays and Bank Holidays.

Preferential Runway Use – To and from the north, but is subject to weather
conditions, safety requirements, air traffic requirements, aircraft performance and
approach aid limitations. Effectively, there are many reasons why all aircraft cannot
always use the preferred runways, but approximately 70 % currently do.

Noise Preferential Routings.-These are published in the UK Air Pilot and all pilots
using the airport are, therefore, made fully aware. The routes are corridors (a 3km
swath) rather than an absolute fixed track, and currently approximately 95% of
aircraft are on track. Reasons why aircraft may stray off the preferred route include
weather conditions (wind will tend to push aircraft off route) the loading of the aircraft
or air traffic safety considerations.

“Track performance” may however, improve in future. Currently aircraft landing from
the north have the benefit of an instrument landing system (which automatically lands
the aircraft), a similar system is to be installed for aircraft landing from the south, and
it is likely that aircraft will then be able to follow a more precise route.

An aircraft tracking system is also planned (but has been delayed for technical
reasons), which will allow real time monitoring of the aircraft route. This will enable
the airport operator to ensure that airlines and their pilots are following the
preferential routes and take any enforcement action if necessary. Also, residents will
have more confidence that correct routes are being followed.

Night Flying Policy. - A Quota Count Point System similar to that in use at
Heathrow, Stanstead and Gatwick is in place. This effectively prevents the use of the
noisiest aircraft at night. In addition, a Night Noise Sanctions Scheme is in place
which will financially penalise aircraft operators who exceed night time noise limits.

Noise Monitoring Scheme – Aircraft noise is monitored from two fixed stations north
and south of the airport. In addition, the airport has a mobile monitoring station
available for use in outlying locations. It will be sited in various villages for at least a
month at a time (to enable a representative sample to be obtained), locations will in
due course include villages within Bassetlaw.

Sound insulation Grant Scheme – The scheme will fund noise insulation works to
the dwellings most effected by noise, in reality, these will be very close to the airport
and will not extend into Bassetlaw.

Complaints Procedure- Residents can complain by telephone, letter or e-mail, and
are encouraged to leave details of time, date etc. The airport will then investigate the
complaint and write back to the complainant. Complaints are reported to the Noise
Monitoring Sub Committee at each meeting.

Most complaints were received during the opening months of operation. 50% of all
complaints arise from Bawtry residents (mainly relating to aircraft landing form the
south). Bassetlaw generates approximately 1 to 2% of all complaints.

Aircraft movements are likely to increase as the airport develops, but the noise
generated by individual aircraft may fall as older noisier aircraft are phased out of the
airline fleets. (For example, the noisier 737-200 series aircraft that originally operated
at Robin Hood Airport have now been replaced by quieter types).
The following is an extract from the Robin Hood Airport website

Noise

Robin Hood Airport acknowledges that noise remains the impact of greatest concern for local
residents to Robin Hood Airport. Robin Hood Airport have developed a Public Noise
Complaints procedure as approved by the Local Planning Authority to handle, monitor,
investigate and report each complaint lodged by members of the public.

Lodging a Complaint

There is a 24 hour answering service to lodge a complaint: 01302 623623 or, write to:

Environment & Community Manager
Robin Hood Airport
Heyford House
First Avenue
Doncaster
DN9 3RH

environment@robinhoodairport.com

INVESTIGATION

All complaints are immediately logged onto a standard proforma and once the data has been
gathered, the Environment Co-ordinator shall examine what was happening with regard to:

• The Airfield
• The flying operations on the date of the complaint
• The weather conditions and
• Examination of the output form the Noise Monitoring and Track Keeping System


REPORTING

1. The Environment Co-ordinator will respond to the complainant in writing as soon as
practical and within one month of the initial complaint being made, explaining the finding of
the investigation and any actions taken.

2. Monthly reports will be delivered to Doncaster Metropolitan Council and quarterly reports to
the Noise Sub Committee and Airport Consultative Committee. Also, a digest will be produced
for the Community Sub Group. The noise will also be reported in the Annual Report by Robin
Hood Airport that is made publicly available.

				
Jun Wang Jun Wang Dr
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