New stuff loads at the top pushing old down and off.

New Road

On the face of it the following is very good news!

The BAA proposal is to run a new road south from Hall Rd near the business park to the Airport boundary from where a road, wholly within the boundary, will link up with another coming from Bury Lodge Lane and Church Road, this then will take us all down onto the Priory Wood Roundabout. Probably the best bit of all this is all the HGVs get almost a direct route to the quarry and the business park etc. The Birchanger Roundabout will still be a pain for getting onto the M11 going north but there appears to be more bits to be added to it so anything could happen there.


If you have broadband, click the button to download the full high resolution map as a PDF but be warned its a big file.

Good News?

I have now obtained a copy of the CD ( ”Development Proposal and Report of Consultation”) and the words here seem clearer.

The two runways will be operated in segregated mode, in which one runway will be used for landings and the other for take-offs. Depending on wind direction, landings or take-offs would normally occur only to the south-west of the existing runway and only to the north-east of the new runway. We do not intend to alternate landings and take-offs on different runways (as is done at Heathrow) as we see no environmental benefit from doing so at Stansted. We now regard the runway dimensions and mode of operation as being fixed for the purposes of our planning application and for the purposes of administering our HOSS.

While still slightly ambiguous in the context of “depending on wind direction” this seems to imply that when the wind turns the two runways reverse roles, where planes had landed now they take off and vice versa. What we would have seen/heard north-east will be on/off the new runway, twice as far away as the old one (measured at runway ends).

While the effects on different communities will vary, the choice of segregated mode over mixed mode will mean that Takeley, Broxted and Thaxted, for example, will fall outside the 57 dBA Leq air noise contour for the new two runway airport, rather than within it as they would have done for a mixed mode solution. Hatfield Forest will be less affected too.”

Elsewhere in the proposal I have found a statement to the effect that this proposal avoids overflying Takeley while landing during easterly operations. Putting all these references together means only relatively rare air movements north-east of the old and south-west of the new i.e.  aborted landings and emergencies.

This is the best possible outcome for Elsenham as our noise levels will actually go down! Before you get too positive however this may be a concession to massive new settlements that may well have been a factor in decisions way up the chain. On the plus side of that however, is that if its large enough a new settlement will produce the new roads we will need when we find ourselves cut off from the M11 and A120 currently accessed via Hall Road and Coopers End, all of which will be lost. Note well however we lose those roads not when the runway becomes operational but when work starts!

Click here for a detailed explanation with diagrams

BAA has now issued its proposals for the second runway. Formal submission will be later in the year. Refusal may be taken as read so the Application effectively goes directly to appeal. The appeal against refusal to upgrade G1 to full use is now not relevant. From looking at the new facilities now in place to handle appeals I am not hopeful of any local interests having any impact on the outcome whatsoever. The last appeal was presided over by a Judge, not this one however. The new Planning Inspectorate will conduct the proceedings and the Inspectorate’s chief executive is Accountable to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government. The Inspectorate’s mandate is I believe to implement the Government White Paper. The legislation that implements this is currently stalled in the Lords so its possible the planning application will be held back till it is passed onto the statutes.

The following is a direct cut-&-paste from BAA’s web-site but to find it I had to dig down through the news releases. The rest of BAA’s web-site has now been updated so to get to all this material firsthand simply click the link button below and follow all the sites links.

Over 50% of the existing airport boundary will remain where it is today, and while extra land will be needed mainly to the south and east of the airport, it is not as much as originally proposed. The map shows the location of the extended boundary, the location of the runway and the on-airport development.

The runway will be located 2,200m to the east of the existing runway. This is 74m closer than the preferred option we published in December 2005. This change helps reduce the overall amount of land required and moves the runway further away from Bamber's Green, Little Easton and Great Easton.

The two-runway airport will operate in what is called ‘segregated mode’ – which means one runway for landings and the other for take-offs. Depending on wind direction, landings or take-offs will normally occur only to the north-east of the new runway and only to the south-west of the existing runway.                BAA


In words, this is the original option “A” but with reduced land grab notably around Burton End.

The silver lining!

Think about the ‘segregated mode’ part above. According to wind direction one runway will take landings and the other will take take-offs. The prevailing wind direction means the one furthest from us will take the landings from the north-east which is the quietest condition for us. In fact from my position near the middle of the village virtually nothing can be heard now as we can just see the plane’s tail-fins over the rooftops. Take-offs will then go south west. from the old runway which again we are barely aware of.

At present take-offs north-east is the noisiest condition for Elsenham but only ever constitutes a nuisance when the planes are off course. I don’t expect to hear anything from take-offs in the normal direction from the new runway. Downgrading to segregated made is I think a concession to actual flight numbers being well down on White Paper predictions, so we got that right. Not down enough however to be able to make do without the new runway altogether. If in the future however the business of air travel does pick up then I am sure the runway spacing is enough to permit upgrading to full usage for for both.

Segregated mode with two runways is the simplest and safest of all set-ups. On the ground its simple queues and on the runways there is no need to interrupt the flow of landings to slot in take-offs or vice-versa.

With the extra runway I am predicting that on average aircraft noise over the main settlement area of the village will reduce!

The terminology of the BAA statement is poor however, with the wind in the prevailing direction all is clear but when its not, which runway gets used for what is not clear. If the statement means all comings or goings from the old runway are south-west and all comings and goings with the new are north-east, then we in Elsenham have the best possible outcome. In support of this the noise contours on the Home Owners Protection scheme makes sense as it shows the noise predominantly north-east. The only planes to buck these trends will therefore be occasional aborted landings or emergencies where the new runway becomes blocked.

All this seems to favour Elsenham greatly but this makes me think on in terms of possible new housing developments especially large new settlements and this may well be giving us a clue as to where the new housing is going.

When we formulate our objections to the proposals we should always bear in mind that at present BAA do not have the back-up runway they asked for many years ago. Those plans and the money that would have paid for it was all set aside when a second full blown runway became likely. In today’s terrorist oriented planning, the blocking of a single runway is a real issue as so many more aircraft will be backed up in the queue to land.

Do not forget that Government policy has made Stansted the Airport of choice to divert terrorist etc compromised aircraft to!


Click here to get the full original map in PDF format
NB Big file!