Biggin Hill Airport fare paying passengers.

Flightpath Watch was notified yesterday by Bromley Council that Biggin Hill Airport Ltd (BHAL) has applied to change the Permitted User Clause of the Lease to include the acceptance of fare-paying passengers.

At present only flights chartered for business use, private flying and a few other minor categories are permitted. The introduction of fare-paying passengers will, without any doubt, increase the number of large aircraft and could very likely be the precursor to the introduction of scheduled flights, with the associated changes in local infrastructure.

For your information, the promised 50,000 cap on movements cannot be applied going forward because the language used by the Council to define it totally negates its applicability after the first five years. The noise parameters approved by the Council are also unhelpful because they are based on average measures over 16-hour periods, including periods of silence.

It also needs to be noted that BHAL has so far failed to respect certain important aspects of the NAP (Noise Action Plan) and the MIL (Management Information Letter). Any further concessions to the terms of the Lease would therefore be unreasonable.

This application is as serious for residents as the application to increase the operating hours at the airport in 2014. Because of lockdown, over the past year we have not been seeing the full effect of the increase in operating hours and BHAL is now making more demands.

Residents need to react quickly to lodge objections because the application will be discussed at the meeting of the Council Executive on 26th May 2021. This short timeline is probably due to the BHAL’s threat to take the Council to a Tribunal if the request is not approved by 2nd June 2021.

The request to carry fare-paying passengers was successfully fought off by the Council at the High Courts in 2002. It was also rejected in 2011 when some loosening was requested on the occasion of the Olympics.

Informal advice given to us in 2015 stated that the Property Law clause BHAL is now trying to use with reference to “the Tribunal” cannot be applied in the case of Biggin Hill airport because of its connection with a local authority and not a private landlord.

Nevertheless, we have seen the Council become progressively more and more biased towards the Airport and we cannot underestimate the seriousness of this threat, particularly in the absence of an effective 50,000 cap on flights.

Please write to your councillors as soon as possible and certainly by 23rd May 2021, with a copy to the Leader of the Council, who will chair the meeting of the Executive next week, to express your objections in the firmest possible terms. Reasons to be given can be derived from our comments above. For instance: the Permitted User Clause is fundamental to the Lease as originally granted with the aim of protecting local residents the 50,000 cap had a 5 year limit which will soon expire
the longer operating hours have already attracted large and low-flying aircraft over residential areas the NAP and the MIL are not being complied with in certain important parts and no more concessions should be considered in the current circumstances residents are being discriminated against in net favour of the Airport, or any other expression of how increased activity at the Airport would affect you.

The email address of the Leader of the Council is: Colin.smith@bromley.gov.uk and you will find your councillors at the following link:
https://cds.bromley.gov.uk/mgMemberIndex.aspx?bcr=1

You can also help by cascading this information to your neighbours, friends or local organisations who you think will be affected if the Council agrees to this change.

Please do not put this off. Drop a few lines now just addressing those issues that affect you.

Thank you for your help

Flightpath Watch Ltd

6 thoughts on “Biggin Hill Airport fare paying passengers.”

  1. Big no no!

    Too much noise and potentially busier traffic causes more jam in roundabouts around the area.

  2. As a resident in Green St Green I am opposing the change to passenger flights proposed by BHAL in an area I travel to frequently.

    We are already subjected to these noisy jets over our houses from their instigation in 2014.

    My main objection is the access and infrastructure in the area. There is only one road which, at many times during the day, is blocked by school traffic and buses.

    Residents of BH will be affected by emergency services getting them to and from The Princess Royal A&E hospital. The current flight path goes over this very hospital!

    Whilst I am aware of job opportunities this may bring, it will also add to more traffic along this busy road. BH cannot currently support more housing.
    We are fortunate to have Gatwick Airport not far away which services our need for flying.

    I note that Flight Path is already concerned that BHAL do not adhere to their current practices – the rest we can speculate!!!

    I have very little confidence in Bromley Council’s Planning Dept., and fear for “their lack of intervention” into what would need careful “scrutiny and management” on a decision that will have a devastating impact on our lives in this area.

    We are already extremely apprehensive about the proposed re-development of Fort Halstead and Broke Farm bringing additional housing and numbers to the area which cannot cope now with schools, emergency treatment, GP surgeries, transport, roads and other issues!

    Our major airports are hardly at capacity at present so why BHAL are proposing this application at Biggin Hill makes no sense!

    Biggin Hill Airfield/Airport is a ‘National Treasure’, especially now we have the new Museum. Let’s keep it so.

  3. As a resident in Green St Green I am opposing the change to passenger flights proposed by BHAL in an area I travel to frequently.

    We are already subjected to these noisy jets over our houses from their instigation in 2014.

    Objections: the access and infrastructure in the area. There is only one road which, at many times during the day, is blocked by school traffic and buses.

    Residents of BH will be affected by emergency services getting them to and from The Princess Royal A&E hospital. The current flight path goes over this very hospital!

    Whilst I am aware of job opportunities this may bring, it will also add to more traffic along this busy road. BH cannot currently support more housing.
    We are fortunate to have Gatwick Airport not far away which services our need for flying.

    I note that Flight Path is already concerned that BHAL do not adhere to their current practices – the rest we can speculate!!!

    I have very little confidence in Bromley Council’s Planning Dept., and fear for “their lack of intervention” into what would need careful “scrutiny and management” on a decision that will have a devastating impact on our lives in this area.

    We are already extremely apprehensive about the proposed re-development of Fort Halstead and Broke Farm bringing additional housing and numbers to the area which cannot cope now with schools, emergency treatment, GP surgeries, transport, roads and other issues!

    Our major airports are hardly at capacity at present so why BHAL are proposing this application at Biggin Hill makes no sense!

    Biggin Hill Airfield/Airport is a ‘National Treasure’, especially now we have the new Museum. Let’s keep it so.

  4. Biggin Hill is not designed to accommodate large volumes of traffic either by road or air. I understand the agreement with Bromley Council regarding the amount of air traffic allowed is rather ambiguous and a loophole has been left to encourage fare paying passengers. Anything that makes money regardless of residents. Allowing this will enable a gateway to bigger aircraft using the airport which will add to road congestion, noise and pollution. I am absolutely 100% against this. It must not be allowed to go ahead.

  5. I am absolutely opposed to to the changes to Biggin Hill airport & totally agree with all the reasons already talked about, the area is not able to cater for more aircraft, Bromley council will do anything for more money as long as it does not have to better the immediate area. We do not need more traffic or POTHOLE’S for our 2 way road in & out of Biggin Hill. No one but the Council & the Airport will benefit from the proposals. As usual the people are the last to be listened to in situations like this. We do not need another fare paying airport, as said Gatwick is our main airport for the area. We moved to this area for piece & quiet & that’s how it should stay.

  6. Im living under the flightpath here in Orpington and cant stand the noise terror any longer by BHAL. Now BHAL wants a tribunal against Bromley Council after it was turned down again and again and again. When is it enough, Bromley Council had to go to high court and even they won BHAL keeps being extrem and aggressive. Why do we not use a tribunal against BHAL to terminate the lease, there must be a break clause!

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