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Pilot seeks permit for helicopter flights
1:00pm Monday 14th May 2012 in Wantage
AN OXFORDSHIRE pilot wants Vale of White Horse District Council to confirm he can legally land his helicopter in his garden.
Helicopter pilot James McAlpine has applied for a lawful development certificate to fly to and from his Longworth home.
He said: “I have been flying model and full-sized aircraft since I moved into Hamilton House in 1993 and have never had any negative comments from anyone. I always fly so as to minimise noise on the ground and am very conscious that not everyone may share my interest in aviation.
“Many of the models I fly are electric-powered and therefore almost silent.”
Mr McAlpine told the council that he flies model aircraft about twice a week, while he uses the helicopter about once a month.
Lawful development certificates prove a development is permitted and prevent enforcement action being taken against a person who has been granted one.
Longworth resident Martin Arnold said Mr McAlpine’s activities caused him no problems.
He said: “This has never been a nuisance to me, in fact I have been along to watch them on many occasions. As far as I know there have never been any complaints and I would have no objections to these activities continuing.”
Another neighbour, John Roberts, said: “I know he has a helicopter and we have no real objection to that, because it only comes once in a blue moon.”
The council is expected to make a decision by mid-June.