Airfield row: ‘We want to put minds at ease’

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The owners of a landing strip have dismissed a leaflet that claims they are planning a ‘fully operational aerodrome’ as absolute garbage.

Son Paul Webb insists that he and 72-year-old father John want to use the land, which is part of Bovingdon’s airfield, to fly just one microlight craft, and continue to make it available to another businessman who has been using the site as a base for his small plane for more than 30 years. “It’s purely for pleasure,” said Paul.

The Webbs say they have been met with a barrage of opposition from some living in neighbouring Whelpley Hill and that an anonymous leaflet urging householders to object to the flight plans is the latest attack.

Paul said: “If people want to know the real facts we welcome anyone to contact us. We will meet them, I will show them, we will put people’s minds at ease.”

The family has appealed against Dacorum Borough Council enforcement action that restricts aircraft movements to 76 each year – a take off and landing equates to two movements.

An earlier application for a certificate of lawfulness of existing use or development to acknowledge the airfield’s continuous use as a base for light aircraft flights was refused by the council.

The Webbs have requested 400 movements per year – which equates to 200 flights and would average one flight per day during fair weather.

Paul said: “My dad used to fly in the 1980s but work commitments meant he stopped.

“He is 73 this year and he wanted to retire somewhere that he could fly.”

The Webbs invite anyone with concerns to get in touch by emailing berryfarm.uk@gmail.com. The planning inspectorate will consider the appeal in early June.