'Impartial' Pledge by New Chairman Snape; Airport Committee Discuss Noise Control Measures
Byline: SIMON DUDMAN
MEMBERS of Coventry Airport's consultative committee have voted in Lord Peter Snape as their unopposed chairman when the newly reconstituted committee met for the first time.
Lord Snape, 62, a former MP in West Bromwich, who has been a friend of Coventry Airport's managing director Bill Savage for several years, was invited by airport bosses to chair their consultative forum earlier this year.
The invitation angered residents and anti airport campaigners, who said Lord Snape, a former government whip and aviation spokesman, could not be impartial.
He insists he is not a "yes man" and will be impartial, although he has said he would not support the views of "fundamentalists" who believed the airport should not be there.
Rugby MP Andy King stepped into the row over the appointment of Lord Snape and wrote letters of objection to Lord Snape and Thomsonfly. Some Warwick District Council councillors also voiced their objection.
Kimberley Kay, director of communications at the airport, said: "All the committee members were present at the meeting. Only Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, who had been invited to take a place on the Airport Consultative Committee, declined the place offered.
"The Department for Transport (DfT) guidelines were formally accepted for the committee and an outline format for future committee reports was accepted.
"A detailed presentation on noise issues was provided by a national specialist noise consultant and this was followed by discussions regarding noise control measures that may be able to be introduced at Coventry Airport."
Lord Snape, who said he would step down if he was not wanted, has said he is pleased with the way the process is going.
He said: "The meeting was both effective and productive, the individuals on the committee each have different opinions about the airport and suggestions for the future. …