London Southend Airport is a key regional and European transport hub, helping to generate important economic investment and jobs in Southend and the wider Thames Gateway.
The airport lies partly in Southend-on-Sea and partly in the District of Rochford and both Southend and Rochford Councils are relevant planning authorities.
Southend Council owns the freehold of the airport, but it has been leased since 1994 to London Southend Airport Company Limited, which is now a subsidiary of the Stobart Group.
As part of the Airport Company's expansion and development plans, Southend Council has considered very carefully how best to achieve an appropriate balance between encouraging airport development and economic growth; while adopting tough measures to protect residents as much as possible from the environmental impact of aircraft movements, particularly at night.
New controls have been put in place, which impose much more stringent controls on flights, and especially night time movements. Compliance is monitored by the Airport Consultative Committee and the Council and an Airport Monitoring Working Party (now called the Transport, Capital, Inward Investment Working Party) has been established to review the position.
The new controls include the following important restrictions:
- the number of possible night flights per month has been reduced from more than 900 to 120
- the night period has been increased from 6 hours to 7.5 hours
- strict noise controls have been introduced on aircraft operating from the airport
- night time passenger flights are generally prohibited
- there is now a runway preference scheme to restrict the number of take offs and landings over the south west, Leigh-on-Sea area
The new controls are set out in two planning agreements (s.106 agreements) which can be accessed on the Public Access pages of this website under application reference 09/01960/FULM. The controls are replicated in leases which can be obtained from the Land Registry.
Regular easyJet passenger flights to European destinations commenced from the airport on Monday 2nd April 2012, after planning permission for the runway extension was granted in April 2010. At that point the new controls came into effect.