City jets cause more noise than Heathrow planes

RESIDENTS under the flight path of London City Airport planes suffer higher noise levels than those near Heathrow, campaigners claim.

Research by Fight the Flights, in conjunction with University College London and London 21’s Mapping For Change, involved residents recording the noise using hand-held monitors.

Levels ranged from 35 to 87 decibels, according to campaigners.

They say 87 decibels is higher than a plane over Kew Gardens in West London and comparable to the noise of a food blender or lawnmower.

The validity of the findings is disputed by London City bosses.

Anne-Marie Griffin, Chair of Fight the Flights, said: “The levels being measured across East London should send shock waves of concern to the heart of the Government.

“It isn’t only about residents being disturbed, it’s also about the effect on public health and the economic cost of that.’’

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She added: “It should not be forgotten that East London suffers a double whammy, of not only London City Airport flights, but also Heathrow flights adding to the misery.”

The airport has also seen an increase in the number of jets, from 43 per cent of all flights in 1999 to 63 per cent in 2009.

A London City spokeswoman said: “This partnership regularly provide help to resident groups interested in gaining an understanding of general noise in their local area.

“However this is not a valid way of measuring aircraft noise and the equipment and methodologies used were not in accordance with internationally- recognised standard methods of measuring aircraft noise.”

She said the airport was not contacted about the monitoring exercise and it was important to note that this was not connected to monitoring by the airport’s own system or that routinely performed by independent professional acoustic consultants.

Fight the Flights have challenged the decision by Newham Council to approve the expansion of flights at the airport.

A judicial review of the decision is due to be heard in the High Court on November 18 and 19.