Court rul­ing per­mits ’copter noise near £4m man­sion

Strictly pre­sen­ter backed out of pur­chase be­cause of dis­tur­bance

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A their luxury home.

A judge agreed with them last year when he or­dered the aero­drome’s oper­a­tors to cut the noise or pay the cou­ple al­most £600,000 in dam­ages.

Af­ter vis­it­ing the cou­ple’s home – Shep­herd’s Holt, a six-bed­room man­sion in leafy Denham – Mr Jus­tice Peter Smith said he was shocked by the noise of train­ing he­li­copters nearby.

Now how­ever, the judge’s rul­ing has been re­versed by the Court of Ap­peal in a de­ci­sion ision which leaves Mrr and Mrs Peires pow­er­less ss to stop the noise.

The Master of f the Rolls, Sir Ter­ence Ether­ton,er­ton, ruled the Civil Avi­a­tion Act 1982 made the heli­copter flight­sts im­mune from le­gal ac­tion. n.

The cou­ple com­plained aboutout the aerodome’s use of a slope just a hedgerow away from their home for pi­lot train­ing.

But Sir Ter­ence ce said such ex­er­cises were a “manda­tory part of the train- ing skills to ob­tain a heli­copter pi­lot’s li- cence”. Land­ing and tak­ing off ma­noeu­vres on the slope were “con­ducted in ac­cor­dance with nor nor­mal avi­a­tion prac­tice”, he added.

M Mr and Mrs Peires last yea year won an in­junc­tion aga against the aero­drome, res re­strict­ing it to only two 1515-minute weekly trai train­ing ses­sions on the slo slope.

M Mr Jus­tice Smith said he would have awarded Mr Mrs Peires, who brought the case, £583,000 in co com­pen­sa­tion.

But the re­turn of p peace and quiet to her home was more im im­por­tant to her than th the money. The cou­ple ploughed £ £1.5m into re­vamp­ing S Shep­herds Holt soon af­ter buy­ing it for £1.28 m mil­lion in 2006. But their dreams sou soured when, re­lax­ing in the their 2.5-acre gar­den, their af­ter­noon ten­nis par­ties had to com­pete with the roar of he­li­copters.

They ended up putting Shep­herd’s Holt on the mar­ket just five years af­ter buy­ing it as the noise was “driv­ing us crazy”, Mrs Peires said.

Tess Daly and Ver­non Kay had been very keen on buy­ing the prop­erty – un­til they stepped into the gar­den, Mr Peires told the judge.

“Tess Daly said later they loved our house but they couldn’t live with those he­li­copters,” the busi­ness­man added.

An­other po­ten­tial buyer put off by the noise was sports broad­caster, Gabby Lo­gan, the court heard.

But Sir Ter­ence on April 12 pointed out the Civil Avi­a­tion Act rules out tres­pass and nui­sance claims re­lat­ing to air­craft flights. Sub­ject to height and dis­tance lim­its, the im­mu­nity ap­plies to noise and vi­bra­tion caused by air­craft on an aero­drome.

Mr Jus­tice Smith had ruled the im­mu­nity only ap­plied to air­craft, in­clud­ing com­mer­cial jets, over-fly­ing pri­vate prop­erty.

But Sir Ter­ence, who was sit­ting with Lord Jus­tice Un­der­hill and Lady Jus­tice King, said flights did not have to be car­ried out “rea­son­ably” for the im­mu­nity to ap­ply.

The train­ing ex­er­cises were “nor­mal avi­a­tion prac­tice” on an aero­drome and the im­mu­nity from le­gal ac­tion there­fore ap­plied, he con­cluded.

The aero­drome’s ap­peal was al­lowed and the or­ders granted in favour of Mr and Mrs Peires were over­turned.

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