This email is to let you know that I am opposed to night flights at Manston on the grounds that I live directly under the flight path the noise will cause the deprivation of sleep which in itself is a heath risk. Tourism will be greatly affected with the loss of more jobs than will be created at Manston.
I may be uniquely qualified to comment on the effect of night flights at Manston. I fly 25K- 30K miles a year usually spread over between 8 and 12 flights, so spend quite a lot of time at and travelling to, airports. Because of the geographical spread of my family I spend several months living close to Sydney, Kingsford Smith airport, I spend some weeks about 15 miles from Stansted Airport and most of the rest of the time in Broadstairs. In my career I have worked at several airports and know the industry fairly well but I don’t claim to be an expert on the finer points.
I can say that whilst Sydney and Stansted have a curfew on night flights, the first arrivals in the morning at just after 06:00 wake me up. The whine of the approaching aircraft to Stansted is intrusive enough to do this, in Sydney because there is a large number of flights arriving, reverse thrust braking is used extensively to clear the runway quickly for the next arrival. The roar shatters the silence, making it futile to try to sleep past 06:00 with windows open. Admittedly it’s all over by 09:30 but the damage is done. If this were to happen all night there would be extensive public action and the politicians would probably all be out of work!
I think it’s fair to say that the population of Sydney and Stansted would rather the airports were somewhere else. Noise complaints and proposed mitigation matters feature in the Sydney Morning Herald regularly. The Federal government wants to build a second Sydney airport but no one wants it near them, so they can’t agree on a site.
Manston is unlikely to attract sufficient passengers to make it viable, after all most of the UK population have to drive past 3 or 4 perfectly usable airports to get there.
Freight is the only option for its survival. A significant amount of airfreight to the UK/Europe moves over night in lorries because of airport curfews. The freight operators wish it were not so and Infratil will be aware of this. They want to be able to offer night flights as their unique selling point to the operators, once they do, I fear pressure will be applied to increase numbers, perhaps to capacity. In addition air freight is mostly carried in older aircraft which do not have the newer quieter generation of bypass turbo fan engines so they are inherently noisier. It should be noted that there is no sound deadening when reverse thrust is employed with any engine. Interestingly at Sydney an Airbus A380 takes off in the evening just before or after a Boeing 747 freighter, the Airbus is almost silent but the 747 can’t be missed.
In the near term, employment won’t necessarily increase at Manston because air freight handling is largely mechanical and semi automatic; one crew can cope with several aircraft fairly quickly. There seems to me to be no reason to support Manston in any way at all, it has always struggled and it always will and councillors should be mindful of the debacle their predecessors created over Sally Lines when they were completely outmanoeuvred by a smart operator. It ruined the Western Undercliff and has provided very little employment in compensation, and they thought Ramsgate was going to rival Dover!
I rest my case.
I am writing to express my disapproval at the idea of night flights of any kind at Manston airport.
I believe night flights will disrupt the sleep of people living in the area generally and not just people living under the flight path.
It will also be detrimental to the regeneration of the area and in particular damage tourism in Ramsgate.
Air travel is not something that should be expanding in the 21st century. The resulting pollution takes us in the opposite direction to the one we should be moving in.
I would like to express my opposition to any night flights from Manston airport. I live in Broadstairs, about 4 miles from Manston airport, and have made previous complaints from being awoken at night by noise intrusion caused by aircraft taking off or flying in to Manston.
This, during the autumn/winter months when the house windows have been closed, gives rise to serious concerns that noise levels are likely to be at unacceptable levels during the spring/summer months when windows are more likely to be open.
Thanet appears to be particularly still at night, perhaps an effect of being surrounded on three sides by water, and therefore any noise appears amplified. The noise of a large aircraft, unlike a passing train, appears to go on for a number of minutes, and with the likelihood of several interruptions during any one night the disruption to sleep could be profound and therefore unacceptable
I do not believe any perceived economic benefit of night time flight operations would outweigh the likely negative impact on the surrounding areas in terms of sleep disruption, especially when so close to such a densely populated area.
I have no opposition to commercial flights during the day, and have actively used such flights when they have been operated in the past. But the impact to myself, my family and any tourists staying in the area would, I believe, be significant and I therefore oppose any and all night flights.