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Miami airport double Dunsfold Park in UK faces filming clampdown

08-Dec-2007 • Casino Royale

Dunsfold Park has appealed against “inflexible” planning conditions imposed by Waverley concerning filming at the airfield - reports the Surrey Advertiser.

The airstrip, test track and hangars have made the 600-acre site a popular choice for film makers, also attracted by the rural location. The airfield is allowed 5,000 aircraft movements per year.

James Bond came to Dunsfold last year when part of the site doubled up as Miami Airport for some of the most dramatic action sequences in Casino Royale.

Dunsfold Park has been home for the BBC’s hit motoring show Top Gear for several years and scenes for a series of big budget Hollywood movies have also been filmed there.

For Bond, Waverley granted temporary planning consent in May for the continued use of building 67, the perimeter track and runway for filming.

Dunsfold Park has now appealed against two conditions imposed as part of that consent and asked for them to be removed.

One forbids the use of aircraft including helicopters as part of filming and the other stipulates that motor vehicles cannot be operated in connection with ‘evaluation, testing and/or filming’ for more than two consecutive days or on more than three days within any week.

“The nature of modern filming is that aircraft will, on occasion, be required to film the outdoor activities
permitted,” objected the appellant.

“By its very nature, outdoor filming – particularly in association with an activity such as car evaluation – will need to take place from a variety of positions and angles.

“We consider the condition should not have been imposed because the council have already controlled the amenities of neighbouring residents by conditions to restrict the noise generated and to allow for the monitoring of noise generation.”

Dunsfold Park has also objected that the existing operating motor vehicles permission (Monday to Friday and not more than 75 days in a 12-month period) combined with the noise conditions are “more than sufficient” to protect the amenities of neighbouring properties.

“The nature of filming programmes such as Top Gear means that on occasion it might be necessary only to film small elements of a programme on each day, due to the availability of cars or due to changing weather conditions,” the appellant stated.

“Due to the nature of outdoor filming and the flexibility required, we consider the condition is not reasonable.”

* Bramley Parish Council has welcomed an offer from Dunsfold Park to consult further on traffic issues faced by the A281, which runs through the village.

Dunsfold Park has offered to sponsor a jointly commissioned study with the Bramley community and involving Surrey County Council in order to look at the safety, amenity, servicing and other conditions in and adjacent to the High Street in the village.

The aim is to identify solutions that could become a binding commitment if planning permission for the
master plan for 2,600 new homes is granted

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