The Government announced on 26 March 2012 an extension of the restrictions on night flying at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted airports for a period of two years until October 2014.
Our subsequent first stage consultation closed on 22 April 2013 and gathered evidence on options for the next regime. We are grateful to all who took the time to respond to this.
I am announcing today the publication of a second consultation, which sets out our proposals for the next regime.
Many of the respondents to the stage 1 consultation suggested that we should take account of the findings of the airports commission before making any changes to the night restrictions regime. The commission’s final report is due to be published in summer 2015, preceded by an interim report at the end of this year.
As noise impacts are a key consideration for the commission, we agree that it would not be sensible to make any significant changes to the current regime before the commission has completed its work and the Government have had time to consider its recommendations. We therefore propose to set a three-year regime to last until October 2017, which will retain the main features of the current regime, in particular the numbers of movements and noise quota permitted.
I will place a copy of the consultation in the Libraries of both Houses.