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Green Belt threatened across UK

14th April, 2008

We were recently asked about threats to Green Belt from airport expansion. We are not aware of any review or compilation of information but here are a few snippets.

UK: “About 700 hectares (over 2.5 square miles) of Green Belt could be lost if the recommendations for airport expansion set out in the 2003 Air Transport White Paper, The Future of Air Transport, are implemented in full.”

Luton: “Over 340 hectares of Green Belt would be lost, for a new 3 km runway“. There would also be 170 hectares for an “environmental buffer”. But the plan was withdrawn in July 2007.

Gatwick: 240 hectares for a second runway at Gatwick.

Manchester: It seems in 2005 “Manchester airport’s plans for a 1,500-place car park on green belt land within council boundaries, were rejected by Macclesfield council“.

Bristol: In January 2008 an article about Bristol airport said “The draft regional spatial strategy has said green belt restrictions around the airport should be lifted to allow it to expand.” and there is the current permitted development expansion for the “walkway”, though that does not seem to be impinging on Green Belt.

Liverpool: “A future development plan released by Liverpool City Council yesterday (2.2.2008) supports the principle of Liverpool Airport being allowed to expand into the land to its south, part of the Green Belt and centred on the hamlet of Oglet.”

Birmingham: “At Birmingham, there would be more exposure to noise and some green belt land would be needed, both for the airport itself and associated development. “

If anyone has more information, we would like to hear!

Area of Green Belt
Area (km²) around cities:
5,133 London (The Metropolitan Green Belt)
2,578 North West (Merseyside and Greater Manchester)
2,556 South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire
2,315 West Midlands
825 South west Hampshire and South east Dorset (Bournemouth/Poole, New Forest)
688 Avon (Bristol and Bath)
663 Tyne and Wear
618 Nottingham and Derby
441 Stoke-on-Trent
350 Oxford
267 Cambridge
262 York
70 Gloucester and Cheltenham
7 Burton upon Trent and Swadlincote
Total 16,766 km²

(Information assembled by Sarah Clayton of Airport Watch)