Edinburgh Airport has offered assurance to Fife communities amid worries about changes to flight paths.
Large swathes of the kingdom fall into several ‘envelopes’ mapped out by the airport as potential routes for departing and arriving aircraft.
Thousands of Fife residents have already taken part in the first stage of its consultation, which will help to determine precise route options.
There is confusion and concern about the potential impact of the airspace changes, which could see aircraft flying at below 4,000ft over coastal fringes of Fife.
Narrower routes developed will mean fewer homes are overflown but those which are will be overflown more often.
However, Gordon Robertson, Edinburgh Airport communications director, said: “Following changes to flight path routes, likely to commence in 2018, there is no reason why inbound or outbound flights from Edinburgh Airport should be any lower over Fife than they are at present.”
He said that the consultation launched four weeks ago had received a great response from Fife.
Charlestown, Limekilns and Pattiesmuir Community Council is among a number of community councils airport representatives are to visit to explain their plans.
Sue Hamilton, the community council’s secretary, said aircraft flying overhead presently caused little bother but she feared the consequences of the airport’s aim of increasing its capacity.
She also said people needed more information about what might happen and criticised the timing of the consultation.
She said: “There are concerns about how the consultation is being run, over the summer holidays when community councils don’t meet, and that the information provided is really quite vague.
“You can’t tell how many planes it might involve, over what period, what height or anything like that.
“It could just give them blanket permission to fly over people’s homes if they don’t complain.
“We have to be alert to this and every community must realise this.”
Alterations to flight paths, devised in the 1970s when the airport was used by less than a tenth of the 11.1 million passengers of last year, will take advantage of improved navigational capabilities.
The airport said the paths would allow maximum operational benefits while minimising impact on local communities.
Chief executive Gordon Dewar thanked those who had already contributed to what he described as a robust consultation process.
He said: “I am delighted to report that the consultation process is going well and we are encouraged by the quantity and quality of the responses to date.
“We want to encourage even more people to respond in order that we can have a clear understanding of the views from all those with an interest in this issue.
“It is vital that as Scotland’s leading airport we offer both those directly impacted by any potential changes and those beyond the Edinburgh and surrounding area who have an interest the opportunity to have their say in how we update and modernise to allow us to keep delivering the best possible international connectivity for the country.
The 14-week consultation closes on September 12 and the second stage, in which viable flight path options will be presented, will start in December.