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Norwich helicopters 'are so noisy'

PUBLISHED: 16:51 17 March 2010 | UPDATED: 08:56 02 July 2010

Airport bosses have rejected claims over low-flying helicopters.

Airport bosses have rejected claims over low-flying helicopters.

Peter Walsh

Claims that low-flying helicopter flights have increased over a village close to Norwich since the closure of an RAF base in the region have been rejected by airport bosses.

Claims that low-flying helicopter flights have increased over a village close to Norwich since the closure of an RAF base in the region have been rejected by airport bosses.

Jackie Money, who has lived in Spixworth for the past 11 years, said the village has been a peaceful and tranquil place until RAF Coltishall closed in 2006.

Mrs Money, who lives in Chestnut Avenue, said since then the village has been “plagued” by low-flying helicopter flights which brought danger as well as increased noise levels to the area.

She has raised the issue with Norwich International Airport but received no reply and so then sought help from Broadland District Council and Mid Norfolk MP Keith Simpson.

She said: “My house overlooks the most beautiful meadows which are situated behind Spixworth church and, when we moved here, it was wonderful listening to the birds singing and just generally enjoying a good old-fashioned village atmosphere but now we can have anything up to nine helicopters flying low and directly over the houses every hour.”

But an airport spokeswoman said: “Norwich Airport can confirm there has not been any change to helicopter routes or an increase in helicopter activity after the closure of RAF Coltishall on November 30 2006. RAF Coltishall operated Jaguars and not helicopters so there is no reason for activity to have increased. Norwich Airport can also confirm that on outbound flights, North Sea Helicopters fly at least 2,000ft and on inbound 1,500ft. The Air Navigation Order (ANO) states that the minimum flight height is 500ft. The only time that North Sea Helicopters from Norwich Airport would fly at a height of 500ft is in icing conditions and would be required by law to avoid built up areas, this height restriction excludes The Police Support Unit and The East Anglian Air Ambulance.”

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