Andy Sinclair, Head of Airspace Strategy and Engagement

Andy SinclairThe purpose of our blog is to update readers on airspace related activities and issues at Gatwick Airport and around the local area that may be of interest to our local communities and stakeholders. I plan to include updates on public aviation consultations, airspace and operational changes and the work of our Noise Management Board. If you want to know more about noise from planes or the airport or find out more about flightpaths of aircraft, then please use our specially developed Noiselab where you will find a raft of data and information.

All previous blogs are at the bottom of this page with the most recent blog first.

Reduced night noise trial update - 25 September 2018

Back in March 2017, during the fifth NMB, an initiative was proposed to reduce the noise that aircraft make when arriving at Gatwick. The initiative, with the support of our communities, would involve running a ‘Reduced Night Noise’ (RNN) trial (between the hours of 01.30 to 05.00) to increase the height of low flying aircraft so the noise they make on the ground is reduced.

Based on the results of similar approaches at Schiphol and Dublin airports, it is expected the majority of residents who are currently overflown will experience less noise during the trial because the aircraft will be flying higher. It is also important to note that no more aircraft will fly at night than currently during any trial and that nobody will be newly overflown 

Discussions with the CAA and work by the NMB to bring the RNN to fruition continues and for a more detailed explanation about the proposed initiative, you can read our Q&As.

We have also noticed some recent speculation among local residents that a routine calibration test flight at Gatwick is a precursor to the RNN. Calibration checks of the Instrument Landing System are in fact a periodic safety requirement for all UK airports so are not linked to the proposed RNN.

The Instrument Landing System comprises of a radio beam and a signal that guides inbound aircraft to touchdown. The procedure involves making a series of approaches and breaking off without landing. This results in areas surrounding the airport being overflown during the calibration test flight. The checks are carried out at night when there is little traffic and because of this a light aircraft is used to minimise disturbance to the local community.

I will share further updates on the RNN once the initiative has been discussed at the next NMB.

See below for previous blog updates.

Route 4 update - 16 May 2018


Route 4 update - 29 March 2018


Noise reduction initiatives - 16 January 2018


Improving information - 9 October 2017


Departures works and NMB - 14 September 2017


Focus on departures - 4 July 2017


Proposed airspace change for Gatwick standard arrival routes from the south and west - 5 June 2017


Assessing new departures procedure - 22 May 2017


Airspace update - 16 May 2017


Airspace update - 13 April 2017


Airspace update - 17 February 2017


Route 4 update - 23 December 2016


Route 4 update - 11 November 2016


Route 4 update - 31 October 2016