BIRMINGHAM Airport is extending a public consultation on changes to its flight paths amid concerns about disturbance to residents from noise.
The consultation over the runway 33 flight path changes will now close on November 6 – one month later than originally planned.
Meriden MP, Dame Caroline Spelman, and North Warwickshire MP, Craig Tracey, urged Birmingham Airport to extend the deadline.
They said it was necessary to give residents the chance to ‘respond accurately to the flight path changes’.
Affected communities in Solihull borough have expressed some concerns about the quality of the consultation so far.
In a joint letter to the chief operating officer, David Winstanly, the MPs expressed their disappointment following the cancellation of a meeting with local residents.
They also argued residents should be given more time to consider the proposals, amid reports that Birmingham Airport had amended its proposals during the consultation process.
Dame Caroline said the extension of the consultation would “reassure the community that the airport is prepared to listen to and engage with affected residents”.
She added: “Throughout this process, I have been working closely with residents to try to secure some important changes to the format of the consultation as well as the flight path proposals.
“Following my most recent meeting with the airport, I am pleased to be able to tell local residents that they are considering a number of measures to improve the proposed routes.
“This includes; increasing the angle of ascent and descent so aircraft are higher over properties more rapidly and for longer, and amending the flight paths to move them further away from habitation before aircraft exit the departure track.
“Notwithstanding this promising development, I would encourage residents to seize the opportunity by responding to the consultation to ensure that as many voices are heard during this consultation.”
The consultation is about proposed new flightpaths for aircraft departing the airport to the north from Runway 33.
The airport says: “We are required to implement new flightpaths because of a national programme to modernise UK airspace, which is introducing changes in the technology used to navigate aircraft and which aims to deliver a more efficient airspace system for the UK.
“In response to a number of requests, please note the consultation period has been extended by four weeks and will now close on Monday November 6.”
More on the consultation is available via: https://www.birminghamairport.co.uk/about-us/community-and-environment/flight-path-changes-north-runway33/