HC Deb 18 June 1956 vol 554 cc66-7W
81. Mr. Beswick

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation what sound baffle barriers have been erected at London Airport; what others are planned; and what consideration he has given to the proposal to plant a screen of trees around the airport, or parts of the airport, in order to help reduce the impact of aircraft engine noise.

Mr. Watkinson

An experimental brick acoustic wall was erected three years ago to serve as a shield south of the B.O.A.C. headquarters building, but its use had to be discontinued late last year because of work on the erection of a new B.O.A.C. wing hangar. Earth from the excavations for this hangar has been used to form a new bank south of the experimental wall and this will come into use as soon as the wing hangar area is ready.

Some of the most effective screening has been obtained from hangars or other large buildings and the development of both No. 1 maintenance area and No. 2 area in the south will take full advantage of this. The new B.E.A. hangar, and a number of older hangars, are already being used as shields for night engine running whenever practicable.

A programme of tree planting was begun last year but a number of the trees failed to survive the very dry summer, and in any case it will be some years before there is sufficient growth to produce an effect. There are few areas within the airport which can be used for this purpose without creating operational impediments.