A High Court judge has rejected a challenge over night flights at Heathrow but slammed the Government's 'vacuous' approach to the issue.
Mr Justice Sullivan ruled that ministers were under no obligation to improve conditions for long-suffering residents.
He said it made little sense for the Government to have a policy of bearing down on night flights if this didn't necessarily mean it had to make life better for people living under the flight path.
Three councils launched the legal challenge to overturn decisions on which planes, and how many, could land before 6am.
They claimed transport chiefs failed to act after discovering three years ago that some of the noisiest planes had been placed in the wrong category.
But Mr Justice Sullivan described the bid as an 'abuse' of the court process and said the issue had been dealt with three years ago.
Richmond, Wandsworth and Windsor & Maidenhead launched the challenge, which was backed by Hounslow Council among others.