Longcross ‘driving days’ noise notice overturned

By David Stubbings  (with a G) December 05, 2012 and repressed with thanks from Get Gurrey

A NOISE abatement notice served against the operators of the Longcross Test Track has been quashed.

Longcross Studios

Longcross Studios

 

Representatives of Crest Nicholson Operations Limited, which manages the track, and 6th Gear, a company that runs driving experience days at the site, were delighted as the notice originally served by Runnymede Borough Council in March was overturned.

 

It would have limited the number of track days held at the former DERA circuit in Chobham Lane.

Judge Terence English announced his decision at Staines Magistrates’ Court on Friday (November 30).

“The onus is on the complainant to show service of the notice was not justified,” he said.

“Having read all the evidence, [Crest Nicholson Operations and 6th Gear] have discharged that burden and these appeals are allowed. The notices are quashed.”

An application by the council during the appeal hearings to transfer the notice to the relevant company was rejected with it being lifted.

During the appeal, the court heard how environmental health officers compared noise levels from the track during 6th Gear events to days when it was not operating in order to offer a baseline in the area.

Judge English defined this comparison as “misapplied”, as well as describing a survey sent out to 137 neighbouring residents as “not totally neutral”.

“I accept some of the criticism aimed at the survey,” he said. “It was not totally neutral but the council was absolutely right to canvass views of the residents.”

Out of 137 surveys sent out by Runnymede asking about noise from the track, 57 replies were received, with 44 of those registering complaints.

As part of the appeal, residents’ accounts were read out including one that stated: “We have to keep windows and doors closed, even in the hot summer months.”

To support its case, the council showed footage posted online on YouTube from 6th Gear events, in which a speedometer showed speeds the cars were being driven at, although it was unclear whether these were in miles or kilometres per hour.

An application for costs from Reuben Taylor on behalf of Crest Nicholson Operations Limited and 6th Gear Experience was refused.

Advertisements

About Roger Nield MBE

Safety Director for the SMPL Organisation and supporting our Vulnerable Veterans Programme.
This entry was posted in Longcross and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s