As long as people fly, there’ll be aircraft noise. And while millions of us rely on flying, there is also a downside for people who live or work near airports and under flight paths.
Of course, many people get accustomed to aircraft noise, just as people living near busy roads often get used to the sound of traffic. It is Gatwick Airport's responsibility, together with the Government, airlines and Air Traffic Control (ATC), to manage noise. Although we can’t cut it out completely, we do work to minimise it. We’re also committed to explaining what you’re hearing and why.
Until the mid 1990s, most of the information about aircraft noise came from the Government. Since then, we’ve taken over this because we’ve got the technical knowledge, and we’re in daily contact with both ATC and the airlines.
So, although we don’t tell the planes where to fly (that’s ATC), or set the routes they fly (that’s the Government), or fly the planes (the airlines), we do provide all the information and act as the intermediary between the public and the industry.
The airspace around Gatwick is the busiest airspace in the world due to the UK’s geographical position in Europe and the proximity of several other major airports. As a result of this Nation Air Traffic Services (NATS) and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) are working together on a project called LAMP, London Airspace Management Programme. This programme is re-designing the airspace around London in order to simplify its control and operation, to create capacity and to reduce environmental impact. We are working with NATS to ensure the airspace around Gatwick is designed to take maximum opportunities to reduce noise and emissions. The LAMP programme is scheduled to begin rollout in 2018 and for Gatwick will see all existing departure and arrival routes reviewed to provide benefits along these lines.
We are working in partnership with National Air Traffic Services (NATS) to propose a new design concept to replace the existing aircraft approach and departure routes at Gatwick with the aim of delivering significant local environmental benefits. These include fuel savings for airlines, fewer C02 emissions and fewer people affected by aircraft noise.