Petition launched to save airfield site after owners announce its closure
A petition to stop the planned closure of Rougham Airfield, on the outskirts of Bury St Edmunds, has been launched.
It has already had nearly 550 people signing the campaign launched by Chris Smith since being set up at the weekend.
Already people have been quick to comment on the moves by the owners the Rougham Estate who said they want to return the airstrip to agricultural purposes and that the control tower on the site, the last remaining remnant of the Second World War airfield, is to remain.
Mr Smith said: “Rougham Airfield is going to be sold off, this can’t happen, this airfield is a historic part of the village and town, please show your support by signing and sharing this petition, stop this wonderful site being made into either commercial units or more houses.”
It can be found at https://www.thepetitionsite.com/en-gb/983/833/701/stop-rougham’s-ww2-airfield-being-sold-off/?taf_id=71882544&cid=fb_na
The owners of the land said increasing costs were partly behind the decision not to renew leases at the airfield.
In a letter shared on social media at the weekend, Rougham Estate informed Skyward Flight Training its licence to occupy the site for the purposes of taking off and landing aircraft at Rougham Airfield would not be renewed after it expired on May 31, with the firm required to vacate and remove any aircraft or structures on the land by that date.
“Beyond this date we will no longer by maintaining the airstrip for aircraft,” added the letter.
Skyward is not the only organisation being asked to vacate the site, with Suffolk Kite Flyers and Bury Model Flying Club are also understood to be affected.
Suffolk Kite Flyers said it used the site regularly, with around 25 members visiting on a regular basis for flying kites and kite buggying.
But Simon Eddell, Rougham Estate manager, said the decision was driven by financial implications and the pressures of continued development around the airfield and that running and maintaining the active airfield it is not viable.
He emphasised the grade II-listed control tower was on a long lease and not affected.
Mr Eddel said the plan is to revert to farmland and it will be farmed like it was before it went back to being a runway but that the Grade II control tower is not affected.