Controversial Bristol Airport expansion plans rejected by North Somerset Council

Plans to grow the West Country's biggest airport have been thrown out tonight [10 February] at a council meeting.

The controversial project to expand Bristol Airport has been faced with criticism and protests from environmental campaigners since it was first introduced in December 2018.

The council said the airport's expansion couldn't be justified

North Somerset Council's special planning committee met to debate the proposals tonight.

The body ended up rejecting the plans, which would see the airport accommodate an extra 2 million passengers per year, by 18 votes to seven.

The airport's CEO Dave Lees said it was a very disappointing decision for the region.

Bristol Airport CEO Dave Lees shared his disappointment in the decision

Up to 800 new jobs were projected to come with the expansion of the airport, as well as almost 120,000 flights arriving and departing every year.

Plans included lifting the passenger cap from 10 million to 12 million, enlarging the terminal, redesigning the adjacent A38 road, building a multi-storey car park for 2,500 cars and improving bus numbers.

A spokesperson for those opposing the plans said the airport could not justify the environmental consequences that would come as a result of the project.

  • What did the plans include?


New cap on number of annual passengers


Spaces in new multi-story car park


New jobs expected as a result of expansion


Flights in and out of Bristol every year

Campaigners have gotten creative with recent protests, including dressing like flight crew to march through Bristol

Cheering came from the public gallery, as campaigners watched the decision being made.

Protestors have staged a number of events in recent months to raise awareness of the impact expanding the airport could have on the environment.

Mr Lees has said the airport will now reflect and consider whether to appeal or submit fresh plans.