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Action for Airfields - Supporters network helping to support airfields now and for the future Action for Airfields - Supporters network helping to support airfields now and for the future

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Surrey County Council Deposit Structure Plan
Deadline Expired: 16/02/01 [Update]
[New Alert 26/01/03]
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Alert Surrey County Council have published a draft structure plan for public comment which is very negative towards GA in the county. Proposed policies include:-
A bar on any development at Redhill likely to cause intensification of flying or other related activities on the basis of environmental disturbance;
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No development of new airfields, and no re-opening of dis-used airfields, on the basis of environmental disturbance;
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Private landing sites and farm strip planning will be judged on environmental impact;
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The future of Dunsfold will be subject to studies;
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Limited development of business aviation at Fairoaks will be permitted.

If allowed to pass unchallenged, these policies will form the basis of local plans for the next 15 years at least.

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Action Submit your comments objecting to the policies on GA using the form supplied by the council. In doing so it is important that letters are individually worded and not simply duplicated. It is well worth submitting comments even if you are not resident in Surrey. By its very nature General Aviation has an interest in the promotion of aerodromes throughout the country. Do not feel that you have to write an essay or become an expert in planning law overnight. Other organisations will represent the interests of GA in detail - our job is to support them with a high letter count expressing individual support for GA.
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More Info Policy DN9 (Chapter 4 - Infrastructure and Development Needs) relates specifically to GA and appears to specifically target recreational and training flying on the basis of environmental disturbance. The document is in adobe acrobat .pdf format, and if you need a reader then that can be freely downloaded from here. The deposit plan, also .pdf, is available in its entirety on line here.

The key concern is the 15 year blanket ban on the development of General Aviation facilities relating to recreational and training flying and based solely on environmental concerns. A more appropriate policy would allow cases to be judged on individual merit, taking into account not only environmental issues but also the benefits aerodromes can bring to the local and regional economy, based on the prevailing circumstances at the time.

In formulating your comments the following information may prove relevant:-

Planning Policy Guidelines (PPG13) state that local authorities should consider not only the environmental concerns of GA activities but also the economic benefit to the local and regional economy. Specific mention is made in PPG13 of both business and recreational GA.
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The latest draft revision of PPG13, currently in the consultation process, goes further and specifically mentions business, recreational, training and emergency service GA activities. Not only should the economic benefit of these be considered, but also the contribution to the national need for pilots. Redhill is home to a number of commercial pilot training organisations.
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PPG13 also states that existing sites will often provide the best opportunities for providing acceptable facilities.
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Diversification of agricultural activities to include small scale aviation operations is a legitimate development which "...can support the continued viability of agricultural holdings." (Surrey CC Proposed Policy DN17 on Agriculture).
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Surrey CC Proposed Policy DN14 (on Leisure and Recreation Facilities) "...aims to ensure that the provision of leisure and recreation facilities reflects the demand arising in the community". Recreational and training flights are legitimate leisure activities enjoyed not only by the aviation community, but also by the wider local community which benefits from pleasure flights and flight experience lessons. This is particularly true at this time of the year, when such activities make popular Christmas gifts.
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sm_bull.jpg (515 bytes)New Alert 2003
sm_bull_pdf.jpg (528 bytes)Full Plan
sm_bull_pdf.jpg (528 bytes)Policy on aviation
sm_bull.jpg (515 bytes)Form for comments
sm_bull_pdf.jpg (528 bytes)PPG13
sm_bull.jpg (515 bytes)PPG13 draft revision
sm_bull.jpg (515 bytes)Acrobat Reader

sm_bull_pdf.jpg (528 bytes)PDF File
sm_bull.jpg (515 bytes)HTML File

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