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Biggin Hill Olympic plan rejected again

Biggin Hill airport

Biggin Hill airport

Archant

Biggin Hill Airport’s application to extend its opening hours during the Olympics has been turned down for a second time.

Bromley Council’s executive met on Monday night where they unanimously rejected the second proposal which would have meant around 140 extra flights per week for seven weeks next summer.

Dr Harry Ivey, from campaigning groups BRAAD (Bromley Residents Against Airport Development) said: “This is a welcome decision. It shows that Bromley Council does care about its residents and the environment.”

Several councillors spoke to criticise the airport’s application but Bromley Labour group supported it.

The council received 1,741 responses to the consultation, with some responses coming from as far afield as Brazil and Australia.

Orpington MP Jo Johnson said: “I am delighted to see that the views of residents were given appropriate weight in the council’s decision. I know that the community will be relieved that the council agrees with them.

“When the airport operator first proposed extending the lease in February, I argued that the existing hours provided for by the lease would be adequate to meet demand during the Olympics.

“I also didn’t want to see a precedent set that might lead to a permanent change to the lease. I am pleased the council agreed with this argument in coming to their decision.”

But Biggin Hill managing director Jenny Munro said the decision would have an adverse effect on the borough.

She said: “Obviously we are disappointed.. We had more than a six fold increase in support. We now have business enquiries which we will have to turn away. We respect the decision but think it is short sighted. There was a chance for a real legacy and benefits.”

Biggin Hill resident Ray Watson said: “Once again the council has bowed to the pressure of the residents who are in the vast majority totally against any expansion at the airport.”

Bromley Council leader Stephen Carr said: “We listened very carefully to the case put before us and we were simply not convinced. We just do not believe that the benefits being spoken about were strong enough when compared to the adverse impact of additional flights. We continue to want to see a viable airport which is commercially successful.”


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