Monitor air traffic - residents told

RESIDENTS worried by low-flying planes were today told to log the times when they are disturbed by aircraft so the height can be checked against airport computer records.

RESIDENTS worried by low-flying planes were today told to log the times when they are disturbed by aircraft so the height can be checked against airport computer records.

The Evening Star has been highlighting growing concern about cargo and passenger jet planes over the county since changes this year increased airspace capacity by 30 per cent and reduced flying heights by 5,000 feet.

South Suffolk MP Tim Yeo met with Terry Morgan, managing director at Stansted airport to discuss low-flying planes which villagers claim are ruining their lives.

He visited the airport's Flight Evaluation Unit where he said he was able to see detailed records of all flights to and from Stansted which could assist residents in their battle to have their peace restored.


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He said: "I was very encouraged to see very detailed information about the frequency, routes and heights of aircraft.

"While this information will not solve the problem it will assist when making complaints, if someone thinks for instance that a plane is flying at say less than 6,000 ft, that information is all recorded and held on file for three months.

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"I am encouraging people to log the times when a disturbance is caused by a plane so it can be checked against this information."

Shadow transport minister Mr Yeo said most of the concerns had been raised by residents in Sudbury and the Box and Stour valleys.

Changes in flightpaths to Stansted has meant some air traffic re-routed from the Dedham Vale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and residents in the re-routed areas claim some planes are flying too low and causing distress with the noise of their engines.

Mr Morgan said: "We do not have control over airspace movement, but as the airspace operator, we work very closely with National Air Traffic Services to make sure as much information as possible is available to the public.

"Our Flight Evaluation Unit at Stansted receives nearly 17,300 enquiries a year about aircraft noise and track keeping, and also provides a valuable service for prospective house purchasers."

A spokesman for the airport said that on average 1,650 aircraft arrive at Stansted each week with approximately 110 of those flying over Sudbury, and of the 17,300 enquiries made annually, only 18 had been complaints about air traffic over the town so far this year.

Are you affected by more air traffic? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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