Southampton Airport runway expansion to go ahead after Court of Appeal decision

The airport was originally granted permission by Eastleigh Borough Council in 2021. Credit: PA

Plans to extend the runway at Southampton Airport will go ahead, a court has ruled.

The Court of Appeal made the decision on Monday, after campaigners challenged the decision by Eastleigh Borough Council.

Group Opposed to the Expansion of Southampton Airport (GOESA) Ltd had previously argued against extending the northern end of the runway by 164 metres, saying Eastleigh Borough Council's decision was unlawful.

In May a High Court judge declined calls for a judicial review, but GOESA later submitted a formal application to the court asking for permission to appeal the latest judgement.

However, the court confirmed on Monday that the permission to appeal was refused by Lady Justice Andrews.

Bosses want the runway to be extended so larger commercial jets can land and take off at the airport. Credit: ITV News

Southampton Airport welcomed the news, with a spokesperson saying:

"Southampton Airport welcomes today’s (1/8/22) decision by the Court of Appeal, which upholds the democratic resolution of Eastleigh Borough Council to grant planning permission for our runway extension.

“The Court of Appeal refused permission for GOESA Ltd to bring an appeal against the recent judgement of the High Court, which in May 2022 had agreed that Eastleigh Borough Council’s approval of our runway application was lawful.

"As a result, there can be no further challenge to the legality of the borough council’s decision on our runway extension – and Southampton Airport can begin to plan for the delivery of the scheme."

Southampton Airport's boss has warned that 2,000 jobs could be put at risk if the plans don't go ahead Credit: ITV Meridian

GOESA Ltd has said the decision is deeply disappointing.

A spokesperson told ITV Meridian that the decision is 'impossible to reconcile' as our climate changes.

"It is a deeply disappointing outcome for the thousands of people who will be adversely affected by the increase in noise and disturbance from the larger noisier planes that Southampton Airport hopes to attract through its expansion plans.

"A proposed increase of 50%, to some 3 million, in the number of passengers flying from Southampton by 2034 is impossible to reconcile with the urgent need to tackle the climate change crisis."