Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 14°C

Search

Suffolk: Petition urges go-ahead for flying at Bentwaters

PUBLISHED: 06:00 25 June 2014

The Grace Spitfire flying over Bentwaters

The Grace Spitfire flying over Bentwaters

Nearly 5,000 people have signed a petition urging planners to permit flying at the former Bentwaters USAF air base

The online petition, which will be sent to Suffolk Coastal when the consultation deadline finishes on July 7, is supporting the Grace Spitfire and other heritage planes which fly from the site.

David Burr, who launched the petition, said: “The 1999 Planning Inspector’s report concerned proposals for a regional airport of some 80,000 movements a year. The Inspector was not against all flying from Bentwaters forever.

“The (current) application proposes a maximum of 480 flights – 960 movements – per year. A take-off and landing is one flight.

“This averages 1.25 flights a day. There is no intention of creating an airport and the numbers confirm this.

“There is already flying in this area of the county by military and civilian pilots. It is common knowledge that since the Americans left in 1993 there has been continuous flying from Bentwaters.”

Kay Nash, Rendlesham Parish Council chairman, said more than 300 letters in support of the Bentwaters planning application had been handed in at the Rendlesham Show, and a further 350 signatures were collected on petition forms to add to those online.

Opponents stress that they are not against the Spitfire flying but fear an increase in flights could set a precedent for further flying development in future and harm the tranquillity of the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and ruin one of the main reasons people visit the Suffolk Coastal area.

Steven Bainbridge, of Evolution Town Planning, agents for Bentwaters’ owners, said the website of the Bentwaters Campaign Group (BCG) proclaimed it was “opposed to flying from Bentwaters since 1997”.

He said a five-hour meeting had been held between the owners and Carolyn and Richard Grace from Air Leasing with the BCG to explain the planning application and the structure and function of Air Leasing, which operates the Spitfire, and how that supports the historic aircraft.

Mr Bainbridge said: “Therefore if the BCG truly support the Spitfire, they must know (because we told them) the fact is they must also support Air Leasing Ltd. The two are in fact inextricably linked.”

Police have been tackling regular anti-social behaviour around Ipswich Waterfront – with Suffolk New College grounds among those where the problems have been spotted.

A motocross enthusiast has called for better facilities for young riders in Suffolk after long-running concerns about illegal racing resurfaced.

The law firm representing former pupils of the disgraced Oakwood School in Stowmarket say their clients have received more than £2million in compensation from Suffolk County Council.

The founder of a charity that supports sexually abused children in Suffolk has given an insight into what it’s like working in this harrowing field as the organisation marks its fifth birthday.

The most popular baby names for 2016 in England and Wales have been revealed with Olivia and Oliver being ranked as the number one choices.

Family and friends have raised a glass for Muriel ‘Midge’ Barker – who celebrates her 106th birthday on Friday

With the weekend only a few days away you might be wondering how you are going to spend it, check out our what’s on guide for events near you.

The first of two exhibition sessions detailing options for a new bypass on the A12 in Suffolk was held yesterday – with about 70 people attending.

Parents have been urged to read more often to their children after research found almost half feel they do not set a good example at home across East Anglia.

A woman and three teenagers have appeared in court charged with Class A drugs offences in Ipswich.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24