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. We have recently extended the focus of the blog from talking only about  Route 4 to including all other aspects of airspace operations that may be of interest to our local communities and stakeholders.

There is a lot happening this year in terms of public aviation consultations as well as some operational changes and I thought it might be useful to keep you up-to-date on all such activity. I plan to post here every few weeks on the most topical issues, including as work being taken forward by our Noise Management Board.

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

16 January 2018

We were pleased last month to see the operation of the first EasyJet New Engine Option or NEO from Gatwick. This marks the start of an exciting programme of aircraft fleet replacement for EasyJet which over time, will make a really important contribution to reducing noise. This is part of a wider programme with our aviation partners aimed at reducing noise in and around the airport.

Significant noise reduction

The A320 new engine option provides significant environmental benefits, for example, it will reduce noise by up to 50%; in terms of measured noise level - this is around 4dB on departure and 3dB on arrival.

To put this into context easyJet operates around 40% of the flights to and from Gatwick and so this development forms a very important part of our collective approach to reducing aviation noise. A number of other airlines that fly from Gatwick also have fleet replacement plans involving the A320 and the slightly larger A321 NEOs all of which will contribute to delivering environmental improvements.

Other noise management strategies

This together with other noise management strategies we are developing and deploying at Gatwick will contribute to improve aviation noise.

An example of a current initiative on a similar theme is a programme led by Gatwick in conjunction with the Noise Management Board to incentivise airlines to modify their aircraft to reduce airframe noise on the existing A320 series aircraft. Flight testing by Airbus has shown that the modification to the Fuel Over Pressure Protector or FOPP under the wing reduces noise by between 4dB and 11dB.

In October last year we wrote to all 128 airlines operating at Gatwick to let them know we would be introducing a new charging regime to encourage uptake of new and modified A320 aircraft.

Since being notified of this change BA and EasyJet – which account for 80% of all A320 flights – have modified 100% of their aircraft, which is extremely encouraging.

See below for previous blog updates.

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


Route 4 update - 12 September 2016


Route 4 update - 4 August 2016


Route 4 update - 8 July 2016


route 4 update - 22 June 2016


Route 4 update - 13 June 2016


Route 4 update - 26 May 2016


Route 4 update - 4 May 2016


Route 4 update - 8 February 2016


Route 4 update - 31 January 2016