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December 2008
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aircraft NATS update
By Tim Hart

It may have seemed to have gone quiet on the NATS front. Well, in addition to dealing with the huge number of responses to the Consultation and their consequences, the pressure on NATS from the airlines for more airspace capacity is off, as a result of the current economic circumstances.

The latest information I have is that NATS is considering further options, in particular for Luton departures in the vicinity of the Chilterns and Aylesbury Vale amongst others and also Luton arrivals and holds. Accordingly NATS did not submit any airspace change proposals to the Civil Aviation Authority as it had planned for September. There is no fixed timetable going forward and NATS says that it needs as long as it takes to give full consideration to the consultation responses.
If you, like me, have only had an acknowledgement rather than a response from NATS the above indicates we may get something… sometime!

As you know our informal group in The Lee incurred costs in respect of opinions and advice from leading counsel on the NATS proposals. A big thank you to all those people who have generously contributed toward these costs.  
The fight to maintain our tranquillity is relentless. We are shortly to hear about the third runway at Heathrow and if that gets the go-ahead, then apart from further objections to that, we need to continue to keep the pressure on NATS against its proposals and also lobby for the Bovingdon stack to be moved.
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