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Plymouth City Airport Closure

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Plymouth City Airport Closure

Old 28th Apr 2011, 06:52
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Plymouth City Airport Closure

Closure of Airport
Sutton Harbour Holdings PLC

28 April 2011

For Immediate Release 28 April 2011

Sutton Harbour Holdings plc (the "Company")

Closure of Airport

The Company today announces that it intends to cease the operation of Plymouth City Airport by the end of 2011. Plymouth City Airport has been loss making for a lengthy period of time and the Board has concluded there is no realistic prospect of trade improving in the near future.

Plymouth City Airport Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, holds a 150 year lease agreement with Plymouth City Council for the airport (143 years unexpired at a peppercorn rent). The Company will retain the lease following the closure of the airport.

In line with its stated intention the Company is focused on waterfront regeneration and developing new opportunities closely related to its core marine and regeneration activities.

Sutton Harbour Holdings plc


This information is provided by RNS

The company news service from the London Stock Exchange
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 07:02
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A very sad day for the Southwest as a whole. I wonder what will happen to ASW?
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 07:16
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Plymouth City Airport Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, holds a 150 year lease agreement with Plymouth City Council for the airport (143 years unexpired at a peppercorn rent). The Company will retain the lease following the closure of the airport.
I take it that this means they don't have to hand the airport back to the council but can dig the whole thing up for other uses.

Scandalous.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 07:26
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As far as I understand it any sale of the land is split 50-50 with Plymouth City Council. But you dont put a redevelopment company in charge of an airport for 150 years and expect them to make it pay when land prices are nice and high.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 07:29
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I heard this a few minutes ago on the R4 news. This is very sad news for the City.

However, the 'City' has prevaricated over the airport question for over 50 years and has ducked the issue at every turn so the bird has come home to roost.

Blame the local politicians that failed to grasp the nettle.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 07:57
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sad sad day but not exactly unexpected !

A very sad day for the Southwest as a whole. I wonder what will happen to ASW?
MX has already moved to NQY, ops is in the process of moving to T3 and the only real route that didnt include NQY has just started (JER)

i think they will continue as just a NQY operation under T3, however i expect the DH8's to be gone fairly soon

cs
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 08:28
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Is there anything else other than ASW at PLH that will get homeless? Like GA, air taxi operators etc.?

I am surprised that a city would sell its airport to a private company without any legal remedy to get the airport back if the private owner should at one point decide to be no longer interested in running an airport (that is - if the city itself is more interested in an airport than new housing, which may not be the case here).
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 08:43
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Exeter Airport being forty or so miles up the A38 from Plymouth will perhaps lessen the blow to Plymouth but it leaves me wondering how many cities of Plymouth's size in this country lack an airport. Poor old Plymouth so often seems to lose out be in in terms of jobs, the Navy or all round lack of ooomph which is sadly needed seems to me.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 09:01
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Its seems crazy that Plymouth is the largest city on the South coast, with a large population of students and is suprisingly isolated to the rest of the country (take it from a former janner!) and now sons airport.

That said, it has been on the decline for a decade and everyone knew it was never going to expand with the WX records, the STOL and poor location. EXT will cream off anything worth having and NQY will probably look to expand any charter traffic. Failing that, it is BRS if you want a regional hub/scheduled flights.

It may seem like a backwards step for a city that is ever increasing, but the airport never really existed in a commercial capacity. The old logo said it all - the aircraft did a fly-over and then diverted to another airport!

Sad day for any staff that are left on site - Devon is a nightmare for interesting employment at the best of times....good luck guys.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 09:45
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This in todays local press

SUTTON Harbour Holdings this morning announced its plan to close Plymouth City Airport by the end of the year.

The airport operator made the announcement at 7am as the stock market opened in London.

The announcement read: "The Company today announces that it intends to cease the operation of Plymouth City Airport by the end of 2011.

"Plymouth City Airport has been loss making for a lengthy period of time and the Board has concluded there is no realistic prospect of trade improving in the near future.

Its in keeping with the citys plan get rid of the airport and keep the nuclear scrapyard that is the dockyard and build a nice big incinerator to take everybody elses crap down here. Good times ahead for the city NOT.



"Plymouth City Airport Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, holds a 150 year lease agreement with Plymouth City Council for the airport (143 years unexpired at a peppercorn rent). The Company will retain the lease following the closure of the airport.

"In line with its stated intention the Company is focused on waterfront regeneration and developing new opportunities closely related to its core marine and regeneration activities."

Well-placed sources believe the group, which off- loaded airline Air Southwest last year, is looking to sell its interest in the loss-making airport and quit the aviation industry altogether.

Sutton Harbour last night declined to comment on what it called "rumour and speculation".

Senior business figures told The Herald an 'early warning' announcement was due to be made this morning confirming Sutton Harbour's intention to close the airport within six months unless a deal over its lease can be struck.

The city-based regeneration firm sold Air Southwest last year after the airline posted losses of 3.94million in 2010.

New owner Eastern Airways quickly scrapped flights from Plymouth and Newquay to London Gatwick, prompting heightened fears over the airport's future.

Sutton Harbour operates Plymouth City Airport on a 150-year lease from Plymouth City Council.

At the time of the Air Southwest sale, it insisted it would hold onto the airport.

But in December last year bosses admitted they were reviewing their interest in the airport after a 9.18million loss in Sutton Harbour's interim results.

Plymouth City Council has been in recent talks with the city's Chamber of Commerce and other businesses leaders over a study into Plymouth's future transport needs.

Business sources said last night they were putting together a "contingency plan" to rescue the airport from closure.

One aviation industry insider said Eastern Airways appeared to already be planning its exit from Plymouth.

The airline said it was unaware of any impending announcement about the Roborough site, while the council declined to comment.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 09:53
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Mind you it is in keeping with the city plans.
Scrap the airport
Keep the nuclear scrapyard that is the the Dockyard
And build an incinerator to burn everybody elses crap from the south west

Glory times ahead for Plymouth me thinks NOT.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 11:51
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Do what should have been done years ago, build a 6,000ft runway circa 476ft nearer to sea level than Roborough is and operate some regular aircraft types whilst taking on the opposition in NQY & EXT.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 13:19
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asw

asw can all ways have a new home at cvt 0523 covman .
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 13:39
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Sad, sad day for the region, the city (ex Janner here) and more importantly, the staff and crews at ASW/the airport.

Hard times for sure - but to close and sell off? To be left without an airport for ever is a hard pill to swallow.

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Old 28th Apr 2011, 14:07
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The scandalous closure which involved Sheffield City Airport comes to mind... this is just as bad. ASW will settle at Newquay, and every janner and business person alike will have to go 40 miles to Exeter.

What a shame.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 15:03
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Sad, sad day.

I remember sitting with my Mum, Dad and brother in the car park at Roborough, nose up against the fence, seeing the Islanders, Twin Otters and Dash 7s come and go.
Seeing all those, and the Chipmunks of the RN Grading Flight, go over the house where I grew up in Plympton got me interested in aviation in the first place. It's a shame that thousands of youngsters in Plymouth will never get that experience now.

Last edited by Gonzo; 28th Apr 2011 at 15:31. Reason: Removed refernce to Heralds, which were at Exeter of course!!!
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 15:07
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You wouldn't have seen a Herald, nor Heralds bearing in mind Brymon only operated one Herald, come nor go at Roborough, Roborough was a struggle for a (lightweight) DH Heron!
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 15:46
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Learned to fly Tiger Moths there via Naval College, Dartmouth. Will have a little tear.
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 16:17
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Looking at other airports which have had the same fate ,it appears that these development companies buy the an airport that is in the middle of two other viable ones , run the airport down over the years and slap charges on to stop people coming so they then can go to the powers to get it redeveloped into buisiness estates and housing... i feel from what i can gather from other sites that have had the same fate that the council has had a hand in the run down right from the start when these companies come in.......my opinion only....
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Old 28th Apr 2011, 17:26
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PLH's problem has always been it's size, it takes a special breed of airliner to operate in and out of PLH, a breed that are far and few between, how many airlines in UK operate airliner type(s) that can operate in and out of PLH and what are the chances of any such airline filling any such airliner in and out of PLH?

Hence PLH has been living on borrowed time for years!
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