Southampton runway extension set for judicial review

Bernie Baldwin

Despite a formal challenge, airport management are confident that growth plans will go ahead.

Following original approval in April 2021 by its local council, Southampton Airport’s plan to extend its runway at the northern end by 164 metres is now facing a judicial review.

The claim for the review was lodged in July by GOESA Ltd (“Group opposed to expansion of Southampton Airport”) which is challenging the go-ahead from Eastleigh Borough Council, within the boundaries of which the airport sits.

Southampton Airport’s operator, AGS, has expressed it dismay at the legal challenge. “We are hugely disappointed by [GOESA’s] decision to bring legal action, particularly given that nearly 4,800 local people wrote to express their support for the plans,” the company stated. “The runway extension is a key part of our plans for the future of the airport and will deliver significant economic and employment opportunities to Eastleigh and the Central South [of England]. Unfortunately, this legal challenge will delay the creation of much-needed jobs at a time of high post-pandemic unemployment, including 265 job opportunities during the construction phase.”

However, AGS added that “in light of the extensive scrutiny and public consultations undertaken by Eastleigh Borough Council”, it remains confident that the Courts will back the Council’s original decision.

No date for when the review will take place has yet been announced.

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