As you may be aware in April this year RAL announced proposals to carry out works to taxiways and runway lighting they indicated that both projects were to be carried out under permitted development which precludes the necessity for planning consent.
Immediate research was undertaken regarding permitted development regulations. We noted that runway works are exempt and therefore require planning consent. Our interest was sharpened as we noted that the proposed taxiway works were on a section used as an unlicensed runway.
Since April attempts to obtain details of the proposed taxiway works have been refused by RAL. They also withdrew an offer for a site visit.
Communication with the Tandridge & Reigate Local Planning Authorities (LPA) confirmed that no planning consent had been sought for the taxiway work. It was further established that Reigate & Banstead LPA had informed Mrs Bartaby (CEO of RAL) that they considered that planning consent for the taxiway works would be required.
It appears this advice was disregarded by RAL who chose to commence work on the taxiway without further consultation.
On 1st September KRAG noted that work had commenced. We made direct enquiries with site workers who confirmed the works were runway based. We immediately passed all information to Reigate LPA who confirmed they had no knowledge of the commencement of such work and no consents had been sought. The LPA commenced an investigation, sought legal advice and ultimately made a site visit.
On 16th October we were advised that (Reigate) Council received legal advice ......which suggests that the current works are not permitted development. As such we have advised the Aerodrome to stop the works. If they do not submit an application for retrospective planning permission then we would need to consider enforcement action .
KRAG are pleased that there is, at last, some progress towards clarifying the detail of the works and that a planning process facilitating transparency and the involvement of our communities and their representatives may now take place.
We will remain proactive and keep you informed of progress.
We thank you for your continued support.