Farnborough Airport Environmental Impact Assessment

Whilst working for TAG Farnborough Airport during the development of its Masterplan and subsequent planning application for a 70% increase its aircraft movement (ATM) limit, we acted as the lead planning and environmental consultant over several years.

Our team performed an integral role in TAG’s business planning, reporting directly to the CEO of the airport and his immediate team. This allowed us to help shape the Masterplan and planning strategy, to work collaboratively at all operational levels within the airport and to represent the client in ongoing discussions with the local planning authority, statutory consultees and local community groups.

One significant early achievement during this commission was our drafting of a series of exemplar environmental standards and procedures which remain in place at the airport today.  This included writing the airport’s ground-breaking Sustainability and Climate Change Charter which we developed in consultation with the airport staff and other stakeholders.  We also managed the EIA, transport assessment, sustainability and other technical assessments supporting the planning application.  


  • TAG Farnborough is the largest dedicated corporate aviation facility in the UK, capable of handling up to 50,000 flights a year

  • With help from RPS, it published its ‘Sustainability and Climate Change Charter’ in 2009 – a first of its kind at that time

  • The airport’s contemporary main terminal building is an award-winning sustainable design

  • TAG hosts the Farnborough International Air Show every 2 years which is open to the public

Key details

Project name

Farnborough Airport Environmental Impact Assessment



TAG Farnborough Airport



Farnborough, Hampshire

Services provided

- Lead planning consultant

- Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)

- Ecology and landscape assessments

- Health Impact Assessment (HIA)

- Transport Assessment (TA)

- Sustainability and Carbon Appraisal

- Drafting key sections of the Airport Masterplan

- Attendance at Public Enquiry

- Expert Witness Evidence on EIA and Carbon


As with all airport expansion plans, TAG Farnborough faced fierce opposition from local interest groups and the application attracted objections from the likes of the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE). Many of these objections were unfounded or over-played and misrepresented the actual environmental effects of the proposals. It was our role to assess and presents the true effects of the growth of the airport -both positive and negative- in an impartial, robust and technically rigorous manner. 

Farnborough Airport building exterior


Throughout this commission, we helped forge a close-knit project team of internal and external consultants, and attended regular consultations with the airport management team, Leading Counsel and the instructing solicitors. We were often praised for our proactive, insightful and coordinated approach to this work.

After Rushmoor Borough Council initially refused the planning application (against its own Officers recommendation) in November 2009, we successfully defended or work at the subsequent Public Inquiry in June 2010. Our Environmental and Planning Directors gave evidence on a range of environmental, planning and sustainability matters.

The Secretary of State for Transport found in favour of the airport and granted planning permission in October 2010. He and the planning inspector found the case for expansion to be wholly convincing and the evidence provided by our team and other witnesses to be “compelling”.

Aviation expertise

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