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Aerospace

Farnborough Airport submits plan for operational changes

After extensive engagement with the local community, Farnborough Airport has submitted plans to Rushmoor Borough Council for proposed changes to the way the Airport operates, with the application directly reflecting valuable feedback it received from residents and stakeholders.

Image courtesy Farnborough Airport

The Airport has consulted on plans to amend its annual flight limit from 50,000 to 70,000 per year alongside other operational changes to meet the long-term market demand for business aviation connectivity from Farnborough.

As one of the largest employment sites in the local area, these changes are essential to safeguard the economic prosperity of the region. Farnborough Airport contributes £200 million to the local economy each year, supporting many thousands of direct and indirect jobs in the process.

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With the success of the local area and the Airport going hand-in-hand, the proposals will enable Farnborough Airport to continue to be a catalyst for long-term economic prosperity; supporting 4,100 local jobs directly and indirectly, and generating £470m of Gross Value Added by 2040.

As part of its revised plans and in a notable UK first, Farnborough Airport is proposing significant changes to its existing Sound Insulation Grant Scheme. These amendments will offer the most generous eligibility criteria of any comparable airport noise insulation scheme in the country.

The application also includes a number of proposals to enhance and improve the Airport’s community funding programme, with plans to increase funding levels for environmental and community projects in the local area. These measures include the formation of a new Sustainability Fund which will focus on projects outside the Borough of Rushmoor and in neighbouring communities that may be affected due to their proximity to the Airport’s operations.

Community feedback received during the consultation was extremely important in shaping the final application, directly leading to positive revisions being made to the original proposals. These have also included not extending the operating hours on non-weekdays as originally intended and a number of positive measures focused on addressing aircraft noise and emissions.

Commenting on the submission, Farnborough Airport’s Chief Executive Simon Geere said: “We have gone to great lengths to understand the opinions and priorities of local residents and stakeholders regarding our proposed changes. We are thankful to the local community for engaging in the evolution of our proposals by providing valuable feedback. This collaborative approach has helped us shape improvements to the final application, which has now been submitted to Rushmoor Borough Council.

“We are committed to ongoing engagement with the community, and will continue to work with residents, community representatives and elected officials in and around Farnborough as our application is considered.”

The consultation – which took place from 4th September to 18th October 2023 – included six exhibitions in four local authority areas, during which more than 1,200 people discussed the proposals extensively with members of the team from Farnborough Airport. Wider community and stakeholder input also came in from feedback forms, emails and responses to a hard copy and online survey via the dedicated website.

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