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COVID-19 has, and continues to have, a devastating impact on Heathrow’s operations. In order to maintain a viable business, we will continue to have to reduce the airport’s operating costs. As a result, we have made the difficult decision to pause some of our noise insulation schemes until 2022.
We will be using 2021 as an opportunity to review our noise insulation scheme strategy in line with our Noise Action Plan commitment. This will ensure that any changes or enhancements that are made to the schemes take account of guidance from the Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise (ICCAN) and a potential Government policy review next year. During 2021, we will also seek feedback from our local stakeholders and conduct research into the effectiveness of our insulation schemes in order to gather evidence for our long-term approach. As a result of this review, our intention is to make Heathrow’s noise insulation schemes more accessible to, and effective for, local residents.
This is a disappointing decision to have to take and we are very sorry to those residents affected by this. However, our objective is to implement the updated noise insulation and mitigation schemes from 2022.
Further details and the current status of each of our noise insulation schemes are provided below.
The Quieter Homes Scheme provides practical support to those homeowners most affected by aircraft noise at Heathrow. We independently assess each home to determine which noise insulation measures will be most effective and we pay the full cost of carrying out the work.
The Quieter Homes Scheme remains open and properties already in process will be completed during 2021. However, properties that are currently on our waiting list and any new applications will not be progressed until 2022.
After registering your interest, we arrange a free, independent noise assessment survey at your home to carry out acoustic tests to measure noise disturbance. (As mentioned above, for new applicants or for those on the current waiting list - this will not take place until 2022). The assessor then determines what needs to be done to insulate your particular home. This may include loft and ceiling insulation, double-glazing or external door replacements. Building work is then arranged. Residents who are eligible for this scheme pay nothing for any recommended soundproofing home improvements, which may include loft and ceiling overboarding, double-glazing and external door replacements.
The Day Noise / Night Noise insulation schemes are now closed while we review our noise insulation scheme strategy in line with our Noise Action Plan commitment.
As a result of this review, our intention is to make Heathrow’s noise insulation schemes more accessible to, and effective for, local residents. Any works which are already under contract will be completed.
Heathrow funds noise insulation for community buildings that are exposed to medium to high levels of aircraft noise. The scheme pays for buildings to make noise-insulating modifications such as double-glazing, replacement windows and ventilation. The scheme applies to noise-sensitive buildings around Heathrow that are exposed to a medium to high level of noise (within the 2002 63 dB Leq noise contour). Eligible buildings are those in widespread use within the community, where people spend long periods of time, or where they are vulnerable. These include hospitals, nursing homes and hospices, schools and colleges, registered nurseries, libraries and community halls.
Our analysis shows there are 64 eligible community buildings in the area covered. Organisations are contacted directly by the community-led body that administers the scheme. Experts assess what noise insulation measures to take and the work is then carried by approved contractors. This may involve replacing windows, installing secondary glazing, modifying ventilation or other steps. Where acoustic insulation is not appropriate or cost-effective, the scheme may cover alternative measures. These must be approved on a case-by-case basis. Heathrow developed the community buildings noise insulation scheme in consultation with local residents and businesses, campaign groups, and local authorities.
Use of personal data
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