Australian man wins right to fly replica Spitfire to work

Source: ABC News Australia/Kristy Sexton-McGrath

A man from the Australian state of Queensland was received approval to fly his replica Spitire to work everyday. Patrick English had put in a development application with the Mareeba Shire Council to increase the amount of flights he is able to make from his private airstrip. Previously he was only allowed 52 flights a year.

However neither Mr Patrick or his neighbours are happy with the decision. His application had made a request for up to 6 flights per day. The council received 182 submissions on the application. Eighty six per cent of his neighbours were opposed to the application.

The council approved the application with a number of conditions. Flights can only be made made between 7am and 6pm Monday to Sunday, and Mr English must also avoid flying over his neighbours by adhering to a strict flight path.

Neighbour Sarah Issacs told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), “He wanted six flights a day which would have been awful. We were hoping it would be voted against altogether.” Another neighbour, Nadine O’Brien told ABC, “If you imagine you are standing next to a jackhammer with roadworks being done, that is the noise we are subjected to.”

Mr English said, “If I fly this aeroplane over 1,000 feet [305 metres] it makes less noise than the commercial jets flying to Cairns all day long. My Spitfire makes less noise than a Harley Davidson.”

The Spitfire took him 6 years to build.

Mr English is an Engineer that runs a firm in the city of Cairns. By car from his home in the rural town of Koah, it takes him 45 minutes to commute to work on a good day. With his Spitfire it takes him 5 minutes.

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