Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Liverpool airport noise

Liverpool John Lennon airport is running a consultation about its noise action plan. The deadline is tomorrow (21st October). Here is the link to the consultation page on the airport's website.

I have e mailed in my points which relate to sections in the document we are being asked about. I have posted my e mail below.


Thank you for asking for my response to your noise action plan consultation.

As a resident of Garston Under the Bridge and a Councillor for the nearby ward of Cressington, this is of great interest to me.

The points I would like to make are these:

* I am aware, through membership of the noise monitoring sub committee, that complaints are collected and responded to and that a log of these is kept. I am however not at all sure that everyone is aware of how to complain. As a Councillor I have received non specific complaints after the event and have asked the resident whether or not he or she has complained. Often the reply is that they are not sure how to or who to speak to. I would like to suggest a marketing campaign, possibly through existing community media, to make people more aware of how to complain and of what happens to complaints when received. It will be better I believe for the airport if there is confidence that all complaints are being received rather than some of them becoming bad feeling that the airport does not hear about.

* I am not sure that the membership of the noise monitoring sub committee is the right group of people. There is an argument for expanding it to include a few more representatives from various communities. I wonder also if the roles of the members ought to be publicised more widely so that they can act as a conduit for complaints if necessary.

* The existing time restrictions on engine testing are I believe too lax. 7 am is very early for potentially noisy work like this and 11 pm is too late. A better envelope for this work would be 8am to 8pm (similar in fact to restrictions often placed on building work when planning approval is given). On a weekend, and particularly on a Sunday, 7 am seems very unreasonable.

* I am pleased at the improvement to the Sound Insultation Grants Scheme (SIGS) and recognise the work that has gone into this. This is a benefit to residents in Speke and you may remember I lobbied for this some time ago. I do believe however that the area exposed to the noise criteria ought to be reviewed annually rather than every two years. Two years is a long time to put up with an increase in noise, particularly given that such an increase will be accompanied by an uncertainty about whether your property will qualify for a grant under the review. I would also argue for an exceptions policy. There might be cases for which the measurable noise is below the decibel level for qualification, yet the householder has certain medical or mental health conditions which would argue for an exception being made.

Once again, thank you for seeking my views and those of other residents and representatives

Cllr Paula Keaveney
Lib Dem - Cressington ward

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