Petworth joins new voice in Gatwick debate

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Petworth Town Council has joined a new voice which has come to the table in the Gatwick aircraft noise debate.

Already members of APCAG (the Association of Parish Councils Aviation Group)

are Wisborough Green, Kirdford, Loxwood, Plaistow, Ifold and Pulborough Parish Councils.

And on Thursday, the newly elected chairman of ACPAG, Peter Drummond outlined the importance of the new group to Petworth town councillors.

He said in January, this year the recent Independent Review of Arrivals at Gatwick recommended widening the computer controlled ‘straight line, final approach’ band at Gatwick which lead to a minimisation and sharing of the burden of aircraft noise over many communities around the airport.

“Arrivals are currently of little relevance to Petworth,” he said, “but there are many airspace design chances being mooted that could have an effect in the future.”

He told the town council he was first drawn into the Gatwick debate when a concentrated departure route was trialed in 2014 which destroyed the lives of people beneath it. It was later suspended.

“It flew directly over my home in Bedham and I had to get involved. As my knowledge developed I realised that Wisborough Green, our parish, was not only affected by this departures trail but also by the change to arrival routes. I joined the parish council to lead on Gatwick and have just appointed vice chairman.”

The new group APCAG has been set up to represent communities to the west of the airport and already represents more than 10,000 residents from the six founder parishes.

Petworth town councillors said they felt it would be advisable to be kept informed of any threats to the airspace above the town and agreed to join to be kept in touch with the activities of the new group.

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