Couple living next to airport complain runway revamp sends '50 jets past their house per day'

A couple who live next to an airport have complained that a runway revamp has led to 50 ‘noisy and smelly’ jets moving past their house each day.

Janet Marchant, 67, claims a new runway strip at Southend airport, Essex, means aircraft now taxi just 150 feet away from her garden.

The retired newsagent has lived in her bungalow near the airport with her partner Paul for seven years and said they had no problems with the airport until recently.

Ms Marchant says the nightmare began in November 2017 when the airport reopened its 'Charlie Taxiway’, leading to her opening her curtains one morning and saying to her partner: "There's a bloody great jet in our garden!"

Ms Marchants neighbours, Alex and June Carr in their garden which backs on to Southend Airport in Essex. (SWNS)

The new taxiing arrangement means up to 50 big passenger jets line up close to her home while waiting to take off from 6am to 11pm every day, turning the lives of her and her neighbours into a misery.

Ms Marchant said she can’t have conversations with people in her garden because of the noise and worries about her grandchildren’s health from the pollution.

She said: “When we are inside with the door closed we have to pause the TV until the plane has gone past.

"I love my garden and used to do a lot of gardening but now it is all spoilt with the noise and the smell."

Janet Marchant, 67 in her garden which backs on to Southend Airport in Essex. (SWNS)

Ms Marchant said she also worried about the damage it will do to the value of her home.

She added: "You do worry if you have a house viewing and there's a huge plane sat at the bottom of the garden.

“Every plane is legitimate but it's a nuisance, is it morally right? I don't know what to do, I have done everything."

She said: “My partner's breathing is now not so good and my neighbours say they can't sit outside or open their windows at certain times of the day.

Up to 50 planes per day go past the Ms Marchant and her neighbour's homes. (SWNS)

"Yesterday there were about 10 that went past and one was sat waiting for about 10 minutes before it took off and it was incredibly noisy, it can't be good for your health.”

Ms Marchant claims she recently received a letter from the airport telling her to stop complaining about the noise to a forum on its own website.

The problem is expected to get worse as the summer season approaches and the airport gets busier.

A Southend Airport spokesman said: "London Southend Airport is very proud of both its long heritage, having been an airport since 1914, and the important, positive role it plays in the community.

London Southend airport changed its taxiing arrangements in 2017. (Getty)

"We appreciate that the Wells Avenue properties were built close to the Charlie Taxiway, and are currently engaging with those residents through quarterly meetings and are actively investigating active measures to reduce noise.

"The airport has ambitious plans to grow, and will continue to work closely with the CAA to ensure the airport remains safe and environmentally responsible for all our stakeholders."

Responding to residents’ complaints, the spokesman added: "We have recorded and investigated over 430 individual complaints and found that in every case, the aircraft concerned was operating normally, legitimately and within the Airports operating framework.

"It is worth noting they are suspended, not banned and that the decision was made by the ACC, not the airport."

The Airport Consultative Committee (ACC) acts as a forum for discussion between the airport and the local community.

Around 1.4m passengers passed through Southend airport in 2018, which counts Ryanair, Loganair, and Flybe as some of its airlines.