Background and History

SASIG was formed in 1999 when a need was identified for a national collaboration to provide a co-ordinated voice for local authorities in relation to aviation.

  • The mechanism through which this was achieved is a ‘special interest group’ of the Local Government Association.
  • The overriding priority was to have national representation, and not just approach policy from a London-centric position.
  • The current membership spreads from the north-west to north-east and from East Anglia to Cornwall.

Our current local authority members encompass nearly a fifth of the national population, 11 million people in total, many of whom are impacted by aviation activity or airport development.

How it works:

SASIG Secretariat supplies specialist information to the membership through news updates and a monthly newsletter. This and detailed issue papers support discussion within the group, informing the group’s policy principles, research, position statements and consultation responses. Where appropriate, these are shared with strategic partners, with the ultimate aim being a powerful lobby of key policy makers and influencers in Whitehall and elsewhere.

The Secretariat identifies relevant issues and consultations which are likely to be of interest to the group as a whole. If required, the group then commissions research and policy papers and identifies issue-specific partners, before responses, evidence based position statements and Ministerial correspondence are drafted for the group to input and sign off. This is usually after having been discussed at Technical Working Group meetings or specially convened workshops.  These meetings are open to all members.

In addition to group responses, some local authorities use (or cross-reference) SASIG consultation responses in submissions from their own authorities, but supplemented with local evidence and viewpoints as necessary.

SASIG was actively involved in the work of Sir Howard Davies’ Airports Commission, is represented on DfT, DEFRA and CAA stakeholder groups and has built up a reputation for being the to go-to representative group for coordinated local authority and community views on aviation. Ultimately, SASIG’s aim is to provide a powerful voice influencing and materially impacting the shape of Government, regional and local aviation policy.