Richings Park and Thorney Residents Association

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As of March 2015 Heathrow Airport Ltd initiated a consultation body which they have named as the Heathrow Community Noise Forum. This has representatives from the surrounding local authorities, including South Bucks, and also local residents campaign groups which includes Richings Park Residents’ Association.  It also includes advisors from the Department for Transport, the Civil Aviation Authority and National Air Traffic Services.This is currently restricted to matters arising from the current configuration of the airport and does not deal with the proposed expansion plans.  Through this Forum, Heathrow hope to engage with the local community to address its concerns over noise and try to take steps to mitigate against this.

The detailed aims and objectives of the forum can be read HERE.  Minutes of the meetings will also be available as and when they are posted below.

March 2015 Minutes

April 2015 Minutes

May 2015 Minutes

September 2015 Minutes

July 6 2016 Minutes

IUnfortunately Heathrow Airport have tried to put a spin on this forum to try and make it seem that they have the backing of the local communities in their noise abatement plans.  Attached are a Press Release that refutes this and a letter to their Chief Executive complaining about mis-representation.

Attached HERE is a very technical report that was launched this week ( w/c Feb 24, 2014 ) in Parliament at a meeting chaired by John Randall.  It was covered by the Sunday Times and Mail on Sunday at the weekend.  The committee room was packed.  The audience included key people from the Davies Commission, the CAA, Heathrow Airport , the DfT and DEFRA as well as MPs, their researchers and some members of the press.  The report found that people get annoyed by noise at much lower levels that the DfT has admitted.  It also discredits the noise contours on which Heathrow has based its assessment of the noise impact of a third runway.

Key points from the report:

It shows that people start to get annoyed by aircraft noise at much lower levels than 57dbLAeq - the official measurement still used by the Government and Heathrow Airport ; that the 57 decibel contour is out-of-date and wrong.

The 57dbLAeq is based on outdated methodology of a study carried out in the 1970s and published in the early 1980s.

It suggests that ‘the onset of community annoyance’ starts around 50dbLAeq and that this is supported by all recent studies done in Europe

It says quite clearly that the reason why more people are annoyed/disturbed by planes now compared with 20/30 years ago is simply down to the increase in the number of aircraft which the 1980s study failed to factor in correctly.

At Heathrow probably around 1 million people live within the 50dbLAeq. (The study is very clear that all these people are not disturbed by aircraft noise but, even if 5% are, that amounts to 50,000 people).  Around 275,000 are within the 57dbLAeq contour.

At the request of the Residents' Association a noise monitor was installed by Heathrow Airport Ltd in one of the fields in Thorney Mill Road.  The resulting report from the measurements taken can be found HERE.  Following receipt of the report a meeting with Heathrow Airport Ltd was arrange for Wednesday 23 July, 2014.  Notes from that meeting appear below.


1.      Noise monitoring survey

HAL/CAA agreed that the noise monitoring survey should be repeated and that a good time to conduct this would be in October when the NATS trials were taking place. The noise monitor would need to be in place during the trial and either before its start or after the trial finished so that a comparison could be made with the current noise position. HAL will inform the Association when a date is confirmed.

The Association proposed the Richings Park golf club as a possible site for the noise monitor and agreed to seek permission from the owners. HAL/CAA said they would investigate the suitability of this location along with other possible sites in Richings Park and discuss with the Association so that an agreement can be reached on the best possible place.

2.      Ground noise

The Association requested that ground noise also be monitored during the survey as there have been many complaints from residents about this (particularly at 05:00hrs).  HAL/CAA agreed to look into the technical practicalities of this and asked the Association to provide a log of the time and durations when ground noise is heard over the coming weeks to inform their decision.  The Association will ask residents to respond to this request via their Internet site and provide HAL with the logs.  A form to collect data on noise events emanating from the airport has been designed for residents to use which can be found towards the top of this page.


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