For the past three years, Farnborough Noise Group has been trying to represent the concerns of many members of the public, councils and environmental organisations. 

Aviation is a technical and legally complex area that is very difficult to understand.

Despite there being government procedures and organisations that should engage with the public, and despite Farnborough Airport being required to answer questions from community groups like Farnborough Noise Group, the engagement has been… nothing.

Formal submissions to the Department for Transport and the Civil Aviation Authority go round in circles. The airport won’t respond at all. We’ve had no discussions with them in three years and they won’t answer questions submitted to them directly or via the airport’s consultative committee. 

We have had just ten minutes in three years to present the issues to the committee and no follow-up action has been taken. 

The lack of engagement has been exceeded by the previous chair of Farnborough Noise Group being given an Anti Social Behaviour Injunction by Surrey Police for “conducting an aggressive and relentless campaign against Farnborough Airport, the FACC and individuals connected with these organisations over the past two to three years”.

This reeks of the behaviour of businesses and government organisations that have been in the public eye recently with the Post Office scandal.

Maybe we should expect this with the airport being owned my Macquarie (who own Thames Water and Southern Water) and the aviation industry being one of the largest donors to the Conservative Party. Something people will be considering in the upcoming general election.

In the meantime, there are changes to the airspace and the number of aircraft operating that will impact our daily lives, our health and the value of houses we might own.

How many people are aware that the Civil Aviation Authority and Farnborough Airport are proposing an aircraft holding stack over Farnham or that there are going to be new, highly concentrated flightpaths to Gatwick and Heathrow over this area? 

Very few, because the public haven’t been informed or involved.

It is hardly surprising that there is a large demonstration at Farnborough Airport planned for January 27. 

We will be inviting the Department for Transport, the CAA and Simon Geere, the CEO of Farnborough Airport to meet with us and have a discussion with members of the public. 

Let’s see how many of them turn up and how many of our MPs represent the concern and anger felt by thousands of people in the area.

By Farnborough Noise chair, John Eriksson