In January last year, Uttlesford District Council’s Planning Committee voted to reject the airport’s plan, triggering an appeal by Stansted’s owner, Manchester Airports Group, which is currently being considered by a public inquiry.

The plan continues to be vigorously opposed by the Stop Stansted Expansion pressure group, but the Council’s opening statement to the inquiry suggests that its focus is now on securing conditions for planning permission which would mitigate the environmental impact of the airport’s growth here