Airspace Change

Guidance on changes to the use or classification of airspace in the UK

A change to the use or classification of airspace in the UK can take many forms and may be simple and straightforward to implement with little noticeable operational or environmental impact.  Conversely, a change may be complex and involve significant alterations to existing airspace arrangements and impact upon the various airspace user groups and the general public.

Changes to the use or classification of airspace in the UK are managed in accordance with the Airspace Charter (CAP 724) and under the Airspace Change Process. The CAA Guidance on the Application of the Airspace Change Process (CAP 725)  provides the detail on the processes by which changes to the dimensions, classification or use of UK airspace is carried out.  

When considering any airspace change the CAA must:

  • Ensure the most efficient use of airspace.
  • Satisfy the requirements of all airspace users.
  • Take account of the interests of any person in relation to the use of any particular portion of airspace or the use of airspace generally.
  • Comply with the Government's policy on sustainable development.
  • Comply with the Government's policy on reducing, controlling and mitigating the impacts of civil aviation on the environment.
  • Consider the annoyance and disturbance caused to the general public arising from the noises, vibrations and emissions from aircraft engines. 
  • Comply with Government policies on the future development of air transport and have due regard for the NATS (En-route) Licence. 

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