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Low-Flying Aircraft

Volume 122: debated on Tuesday 10 November 1987

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28.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent representations he has received regarding low flying over East Anglia.

Between 1 September and 31 October 1987 the Ministry of Defence received some 75 inquiries or complaints about military low flying from the East Anglian area. This compares with some 70 for the same period in 1986.

30.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment has been made of the ability of AEW Shackleton to detect fast low-flying Soviet aircraft.

The airborne early warning Shackleton aircraft of No. 8 Squadron at RAF Lossiemouth continue to contribute a useful capability to detect low-flying targets as part of the United Kingdom's overall air defence system. Our decision to purchase Boeing E-3 AWACS will ensure that the Royal Air Force has a modern and effective airborne early warning system for the 1990s.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many representations he has received in the current year concerning low-flying aircraft over Wales; and if he will make a statement.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many representations he has received on low flying in Wales; and if he will make a statement.

Between 1 January and 31 October 1987 the Ministry of Defence has received 709 inquiries or complaints from Wales about military aircraft flying, compared with a total of 733 for the whole of 1986. We will continue to do all we can to ensure that the disturbance caused by this essential training is kept to an absolute minimum.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether, in accordance with the Government's policy of avoiding large built-up areas when carrying out low-flying training, a decision has been reached in respect of the 7application of that policy regarding the new residential developments of Hardwicke and Quedgeley.

A decision has not yet been reached. I hope to write to the hon. Member shortly.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many low-flying flights by the Royal Air Force have taken place over Clwyd in 1987; and if he will make a statement.

Low-flying administrative areas do not correspond with regional boundaries, and figures for Clwyd are therefore not available. However, the principality of Wales sees approximately 9 per cent. of all low-flying activity and we will continue to do all we can to ensure that the disturbances caused by this essential training is kept to an absolute minimum.