From Manchester Evening News - Friday 12th November 2010
By John Scheerhout
Two families have been awarded more than £100,000 compensation from Manchester Airport after being plagued by plane noise.
The couples took the airport to the Royal Courts of Justice in London claiming their lives were ruined by jets using the second runway, which opened in 2001.
And a judge ruled the value of their homes had been slashed since runway two opened.
Retired builders’ merchants Andrew and Annette Spark, who live in an Edwardian semi in Mobberley, were awarded £40,000.
After the ruling, Mrs Spark, said: “At times it’s an aerial bombardment.”
Their neighbours, Adrian and Kathleen Robertson, were awarded £72,500 after telling how the windows of their 19th century farmhouse are rattled by passing planes and it was impossible to hold a conversation in the garden.
The couples took the airport to the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) of the Royal Courts where judge Andrew Trott said their account of vibration, fumes and ‘discharge of substances’ was not exaggerated and their evidence was ‘balanced and reasonable’.
Without the second runway, the Sparks’ home would be worth £515,000 and the Robertsons’ farmhouse £725,000, the judge ruled – 7.8per cent and 10pc respectively more than their current market value.
An airport spokesman said: “These were the only two of several hundred claims that were not settled by agreement. The claimants took their cases to the Lands Tribunal who have awarded them compensation and this award is in line with our own expert assessment.”