John Redwood: Aircraft noise

I have received a letter from the Chief Executive of Heathrow Airport:

21st May 2015

John Redwood MP
House of Commons
London
SW1A 0AA

Dear Mr Redwood

We have always greatly appreciated your support and I want to ensure we maintain that.

I am sorry that we did not communicate better with your constituents around the airspace trials last year. We let you down and I apologise.

We have since set up the Community Noise Forum, which is working well in improving understanding and communication. We are also working with NATS to ensure they take into account the impact on residents when changing operational procedures.

I would like Heathrow to be a good neighbour. Since I took over as CEO, last summer, I have challenged my team to do more to reduce the impact of noise on local communities and improve air quality. We recently announced our “blueprints” on noise and air quality, which will lead to planes flying higher, fewer old and noisy planes and encouraging airlines to retrofit A320s with a device that prevents the whistling sound on these aircraft. Many of the additional improvements you want to see such as aircraft flying higher will be introduced as part of the changes being made to airspace through the Government’s Future Airspace Strategy (FAS) which my team briefed you about when you met with them.

I believe that expansion of Heathrow can offer unique economic benefits locally and nationally and keep Britain where it belongs – right at the heart of the global economy. But it can only happen within strict environmental limits.

I hope that we can meet soon so that I can understand how we can serve you better. I will ask my PA, Tina to try to arrange a meeting.

Yours sincerely

John Holland-Kaye
Chief Executive Officer