Excerpt from a letter to Dame Dierdre Hutton of CAA from an experienced pilot,


"..changes to the approach procedures where the noise of aircraft approaching runway 26L at Gatwick is now concentrated in a narrow corridor, the vast majority of aircraft intercepting the ILS between 10 and 12 n.m out. This has resulted in an intolerable increase in noise because of a change in flight path, which has been imposed upon us residents by the airport and those who operate it. The real reason for the change is sadly obvious - profit for the airport - and safety is being used as the excuse.


The aviation industry has a responsibility to be a good neighbour. We have developed numerous techniques for alleviating noise nuisance such as noise abatement take-offs and continuous descent approaches. Steeper approaches and GBAS approaches are being considered. It should be possible to vector aircraft onto the final approach at different points quite safely, whether by ATC controllers or automated systems, if ATC and pilot procedures are robust.


The noise nuisance would, therefore, be shared more equitably over a wide area as before, which, at present, it is not."




Former airline captain Robert Steven speaks to Kent & Sussex Courier