Waltham Forest ‘third most overflown borough in London’

Aircraft trails
With flights from both London City and Heathrow airports directed over Leyton and Leytonstone, Waltham Forest has become the third most overflown borough in London

Concentrated flightpaths now mean Leyton and Leytonstone heavily affected

People affected by aircraft noise are being urged to email airport bosses as research shows Waltham Forest is the third most overflown borough in London.

Research carried out by campaign group HACAN (Heathrow Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise) suggests that only the two boroughs adjacent to Heathrow Airport are more affected by overflying aircraft than Waltham Forest.

HACAN research indicated there are currently 190,000 aircraft flying over Waltham Forest each year, or 520 per day. Of these flights, 69 percent are coming to or from Heathrow in west London and the remainder to or from London City Airport, situated just four miles south of the borough.

Waltham Forest is one of a small number of boroughs significantly affected by aircraft from more than one airport.

HACAN chair John Stewart said: “Our survey once again shows that aircraft noise is not just confined to west London; it has become a London-wide problem. Somewhere like Waltham Forest is bombarded by planes from both Heathrow and London City airports.”

The news comes nearly one year after a new system of ‘concentrated’ flightpaths was introduced by London City Airport, which gives aircraft a narrower route over east London and forces them to fly over Leyton and Leytonstone more often than previously.

A year on from the change, London City Airport is now due to review the impact of the concentrated flightpaths arrangement. John told the Echo that anyone living in these areas that is affected by noise and air pollution from aircraft should write to the company that operates the airport.

He said: “They are now looking at how well the flightpaths have worked, but they are also looking at feedback from the local community.

“It is possible they will look at the arrangement again later this year, as they say their ‘minds are not closed’ on this issue. The government is due to consult on a national policy of flightpaths and London City Airport will probably wait for that to happen.

“The best thing to do is to write to the airport. One of the key reasons they are reviewing this is because of the public pressure there has been on flightpaths. Every email sent to them about it is registered and the more complaints they receive, the more likely they are to act.”

In 2016 London City Airport had 4.5million passengers, the most since it opened in 1987. This is before the completion of its expansion plan, approved by the government last year following a public inquiry, that is likely to see passenger numbers rise by a further 30 percent within ten years.

Leyton and Wanstead MP John Cryer last year gave evidence to two public inquiries into the expansion of London City Airport, and is now also urging people to speak out on the concentrated flightpaths arrangement with the hope that it can be abolished.

The Labour MP said: “Thousands of local residents are affected in Leyton, Leytonstone, Wanstead and Snaresbrook. There are narrow corridor flightpaths in and out of the airport. Air traffic is now more concentrated, affecting many residents, and there have been real concerns about London City Airport’s lack of engagement with the community.

“These corridors are now being reviewed. I asked local residents to let me know their views and also to contact the Civil Aviation Authority and the City Airport.”

If you are affected by aircraft noise:

Call 020 7646 0088

Email environment@londoncityairport.com

Email infoservices@caa.co.uk