1st July 2019
Airport Planning Approval to be Reviewed
On Friday 28 June SSE was successful in persuading a special meeting of Uttlesford District Council (UDC) to refer the 2018 Stansted Airport planning application – which was provisionally approved in November 2018 – back to the Planning Committee for further consideration.
The proposal received overwhelming support with 31 councillors voting in favour, only one against and one abstention.
There was loud applause from the packed public gallery in the Council Chamber when the result of the vote was announced. Many of those present had signed the residents’ petition calling for the airport planning application to be referred back to the Planning Committee for further consideration.
The petition, which was presented to the Council by SSE Deputy Chairman Brian Ross, had gathered almost 1,700 signatures in just 17 days, making it the biggest ever petition in the history of the Council. SSE argued that there was a compelling case for referring the airport planning application back to the Planning Committee in view of all the outstanding issues.
SSE Chairman Peter Sanders commented: “It was a truly uplifting day for local democracy but this is only a first step. SSE’s task now is to provide all the relevant evidence and analysis to the Planning Committee so that it can make the right decision. We will take nothing for granted.”
SSE has always argued that the size and complexity of this airport planning application meant that it should have been dealt with nationally rather than by the local council, which is one of the smallest local authorities in the country and has limited resources.
There are many new members on the Planning Committee and it will obviously take time for them to familiarise themselves with an application which comprises some 2,400 documents amounting to around 13,000 pages. This cannot be rushed.