24 January 2016
Waltham Forest & Redbridge Green Party held a stall outside Leytonstone tube on Saturday, January 23rd to highlight the imminent increase in aircraft noise over the area and to ask people to sign a petition opposing the concentration of flights over Leyton, Leytonstone and Wanstead. There was strong support for the petition, with people queuing to sign it at times. Public feeling is running high against the planned concentration of flight paths, and there is also anger at the disruption London City Airport already causes.
Starting on February 4th, City Airport will be concentrating the flight paths over Leyton, Leytonstone and Wanstead despite the local residents being firmly opposed to the plan. This will result in a noise ghetto in our communities and decrease the quality of life of the residents.
London City Airport has shown contempt for the people of London by going ahead with their plans despite strong opposition from local communities. It is also disappointing that the Civil Aviation Authority allowed these plans to go ahead, ignoring representations from local residents. On issues such as these, It is clear that the Civil Aviation Authority is no longer fit for purpose.
“There is strong public opposition to the flight path plans by London City Airport, as the noise will bring additional misery to the lives of thousands of East End residents,” said RoseMary Warrington, a Leytonstone resident and Green Party 2016 London Assembly candidate. “The conduct of City Airport has been a disgrace, ignoring the wishes of local people. It’s time to listen to us,” she added.
The Green Party recognises that it is wrong to have an airport in the middle of a city causing disruption for many thousands of people, reducing air quality – already at low levels in London – and increasing the greenhouse gases that cause climate change. If this prime piece of the land were used sustainably for innovative businesses, residential areas, leisure, cultural facilities and shops, it would go a long way towards solving many of London’s problems at the same time. A study by the New Economics Foundation has shown that the site, which covers half a million square metres, could be used to create at least 16,000 more jobs and add an additional £400 million to the UK’s economy if it were freed up for other uses. The Airport currently employs only 2,000 people and caters for under 2% of UK air passengers.
With London’s worsening housing crisis in mind, Green Party mayoral candidate Sian Berry has recommended the closure of City Airport, releasing the land for building homes which the capital so desperately needs.
Sian said: “With just 1.5% of air passengers across the UK, the airport is a blight on London whose flights could be absorbed by other London airports easily”.
If people would like to sign the petition and support this campaign, please contact Waltham Forest & Redbridge Green Party – email firstname.lastname@example.org.