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Plane noise rises to record levels as number of flights soars

Plane noise rises to record levels as number of flights soars, causing misery for families living near airports

  • Millions face threat of more noise from planes as airports plan to boost capacity
  • Air traffic is up 55 per cent at Luton and 21 per cent at Gatwick since 2010
  • A third runway at Heathrow alone will generate an extra 260,000 flights a year 

Households are enduring record levels of noise from planes as the number of flights has soared.

The total flying in and out of UK airports has risen more than 250,000 since the beginning of the decade, said the Civil Aviation Authority.

Its latest figures reveal there were 2.27 million flights in and out last year, equivalent to more than 6,200 a day.

Airport officials and ministers claim residents will benefit as airlines switch to modern, quieter aircraft. But a report for London City Airport, which plans to almost double capacity by 2035, said the new generation of aircraft is only marginally quieter [File photo]

This compares to two million in 2010, meaning a rise of 13.5 per cent over eight years.

Air traffic was up 55 per cent at Luton, 21 per cent at Gatwick, 30 per cent at Manchester, 24 per cent at Birmingham and 30 per cent at both London Stansted and London City.

Millions face the threat of even more noise from planes overhead as major airports plan to drastically boost their capacity to meet demand.

The planned third runway at Heathrow alone will generate an extra 260,000 flights a year, or more than 700 a day. 

Gatwick plans to use its emergency runway for more than 100,000 more flights a year.

Airport officials and ministers claim residents will benefit as airlines switch to modern, quieter aircraft.

But a report for London City Airport, which plans to almost double capacity by 2035, said the new generation of aircraft is only marginally quieter.

Consultants had measured the noise of different types of planes approaching at around 2,000ft over a property in Lambeth, South London.

Sally Pavey, chairman of the Communities Against Gatwick Noise and Emissions, said: ‘It’s the frequency of planes that is annoying. This rise in air traffic is affecting people’s well-being, mental health and way of life.’

Ministers and business leaders insist higher capacity is needed to boost the economy.

The total flying in and out of UK airports has risen more than 250,000 since the beginning of the decade, said the Civil Aviation Authority. Its latest figures reveal there were 2.27 million flights in and out last year, equivalent to more than 6,200 a day [File photo]

The total flying in and out of UK airports has risen more than 250,000 since the beginning of the decade, said the Civil Aviation Authority. Its latest figures reveal there were 2.27 million flights in and out last year, equivalent to more than 6,200 a day [File photo]

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