HC Deb 10 June 1974 vol 874 cc1220-1
25. Mr. Jessel

asked the Secretary of State for Trade what action he proposes to take to mitigate aircraft noise following the publication of the Noise Advisory Council's report on so-called "Minimum Noise Routes".

27. Mr. Mather

asked the Secretary of State for Trade what measures he is considering to relieve those living on the Mole Valley route from aircraft noise.

Mr. Clinton Davis

A consultation document about the recommendation in the report for splitting the Mole Valley route will be circulated very shortly to hon. Members and others concerned. Other relevant recommendations are being carefully considered.

Mr. Jessel

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that to people living under them, minimum noise routes are maximum noise routes and that the concentration of aircraft noise is intolerable? Before deciding whether to split the Mole Valley route. will the right hon. Gentleman enter into the fullest consultation with the groups of people affected—both those who might benefit and those who might suffer? Will he also consider whether the Northolt air space can be used for the Woodley route on the east-bound take-off, and whether sound-proofing grants can be extended to the borough of Richmond-upon-Thames?

Mr. Davis

The Government are aware that noise constitutes pestilence for many people. I give the hon. Gentleman the assurance for which he asks on the question of consultation. The question of Northolt air space is under review at present. I am aware that some people describe minimum noise routes as maximum noise routes.

Mr. Mather

Is the Minister aware that the noise is more than a pestilence to my constituents, and has become quite intolerable? They have waited long enough for measures to be introduced to alleviate the noise. Will the change of route which was introduced temporarily in July 1972 and which adversely affects my constituents who live along the Mole Valley now be reversed?

Mr. Davis

I have already said that this matter is the subject of review and will be the subject of consultation. I can go no further at this stage.

Mr. Leslie Huckfield

Does my hon. Friend agree that he would have been able to give even better answers to the questions on aircraft noise if the previous administration had been prepared to spend one tenth of what it proposed to spend on the third London airport on research and development on quieter aeroplane engines?

Mr. Davis

The previous administration was irresponsible in many ways. The question of retrofit and other matters to which my hon. Friend has alluded are matters of careful scrutiny by the Government. It is a pity that the previous administration did not do more.

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