Fingal County Council could challenge ruling on Dublin airport night flights

Airport operator DAA was last Tuesday granted a stay on a council order restricting night flights

Fingal County Council could still seek to restrict night flights at Dublin airport despite a High Court stay on its enforcement notice issued to the airport operator to allow no more than 65 flights a night, the council’s chief executive has said.

DAA last Tuesday secured permission to challenge the council’s enforcement notice issued last month against the airport operator for allegedly breaching the terms of planning permission relating to the airport’s North Runway.

The council issued the notice on the grounds that the number of flights scheduled by the airport exceeds the terms of a planning condition that no more than an average of 65 flights per day over a given period can operate from the runway between 11pm and 7am.

DAA was granted a stay on complying with the order pending the outcome of its challenge to the notice.


In a letter to councillors in recent days, Fingal’s executive said it had received court papers following the hearing which “will now be subject to a complete review by the legal and planning teams before the next steps are decided”.

However, the letter noted: “the court has given Fingal County Council the right to apply to the High Court to vary or remove the interim stay order, subject to 48 hours’ notice being given to DAA of any such application”.

Planning enforcement investigations are continuing into complaints received by the council in relation to “other alleged breaches” of conditions attached to the planning permission for the North Runway, the letter said.

“A decision on an application by Fingal County Council to have the stay on the operation of the enforcement notice varied or removed will be made once the review of the substantial number of court papers received has been completed,” it said.

A number of councillors including Green Party representatives David Healy, Karen Power, Ian Care and Pamela Conroy had written to the council chief executive AnnMarie Farrelly after the hearing, asking that she apply to have the stay lifted to allow the enforcement notice to take effect in six weeks’ time. “The decision by the DAA to seek a stay on the enforcement notice is frustrating as it renders it useless until proceedings are finished,” they said.

The matter is due before the courts again in late November.

Olivia Kelly

Olivia Kelly

Olivia Kelly is Dublin Editor of The Irish Times