HC Deb 05 April 1971 vol 815 cc3-4
5. Mr. Allason

asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps he is taking to restrict night flying by charter aircraft.

Mr. Noble

Restrictions are imposed on the total number of night jet movements during the summer months at Heathrow and Gatwick. None is used for charter flights at Heathrow. We have no power to impose similar restrictions at non-B.A.A. airports but two other airport owners do so.

Mr. Allason

Is my right hon. Friend content to see a steady expansion of night flying? Is he content that more and more people should be driven demented by sleeplessness? Will he please carry out an investigation with the travel industry to determine exactly the effect of a total ban on night flights by charter aircraft?

Mr. Noble

I assure my hon. Friend that I am by no means content with the level of noise which surrounds the particular airport in which he is interested, as well as others. We are continually discussing with the industry ways and means of reducing this nuisance without doing serious damage to the tourist industry, which is also important to the country.

Mr. Skeet

Will my right hon. Friend also bear in mind that there is night flying at Thurleigh which goes on until about 11 o'clock at night? Could that be reined back to a respectable hour?

Mr. Noble

The nuisance at Thurleigh, though no doubt of some importance in the area, is considerably less than that surrounding most of the municipal airports.