View Full Version : Coventry ATZ Bandits!

25th May 2005, 20:07
Well it could be known as the chicken crossing the skyward road phonomena, but it could also be pure outright dangerous foolishness and bad airmanship! im still not sure, but would you really want to risk transiting the most complex bit of sky around in the UK and not want to call for traffic information, especially when you just cross an approach centreline at a couple of miles to a busy airport without even calling first, let alone keeping well clear of such a dangerous path. ..... , if you havnt guessed where im talking about, its the 23 approach @ coventry. Maybe a big blue 737 or 757 isnt scary enough to some.... i know where i stand with having that fear. Why do so may flyers think its ok to put themselves and a few hundred passengers at risk due to this ignorance. Almost Manslaughter!!!

25th May 2005, 20:16
I blame Labour... and the conservatives.

First the speeding policeman now this... I'm moving to alicante with Kev and Gaz and Baz.

Onan the Clumsy
25th May 2005, 20:20
That's the typical uselass ranting answer I would expect from the Daily Mail / Sun / Daily Teligraph / Guardian / News of theWorld readership :*

...Damn, I missed out Angry Brigade :p

25th May 2005, 20:23
and that the typical unhelpful whinging whining response I'd expect from a Wall Street Journal reader!


25th May 2005, 20:25
Ah ! battle is about to commence I suspect ?

25th May 2005, 20:40
Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, a THOMSON aircrew member.....
this will be fun.

later folks
:E :E :E :E

25th May 2005, 20:57
In fact I take back what I said earlier about labour.

You've got TCAS haven't you? Relax then.. that'll keep ya safe. When it says go up.. go up.. when it says go down .. go down. Easy.

25th May 2005, 21:01
I'm sure there's a bishop and actress joke in there somewhere, tc....

Standard Noise
26th May 2005, 00:00
"but would you really want to risk transiting the most complex bit of sky around in the UK, and not want to call for traffic information..."

Good god, Argonautist, if you think that's "the most complex bit of sky around in the UK", you need to get out more matey!
You should come down to Brizzel and you'll soon realise you have it easy.:zzz:

26th May 2005, 07:22
If EGBE is complex what is the Heathrow TMA like?? or the London Heli lanes??
I fly out of coventry and at 2 miles out it could be an aircraft joining the circuit, it could also be a military aircraft who was crossing the extended centreline.....those boy's don't feel the need to talk to ATC sometimes, and they don't have to wait around while a Blue 737 decides whether he will take off or not. I refer to last friday afternoon 2 pm ish when a storm was approaching and I was waiting to lift and depart for Wellesbourne.
I had to wait around while the 737 made up his mind whether to go or not, waiting in the hover on the alpha taxiway in a fairly high wind. It was pretty obvious that he would have been taking a risk in taking off with what was approaching, and he made the right decision, as one would expect from a professional pilot. Not a problem for me, I go around the outside with good clearance distance from mature CBs.
However by the time I lifted ( because we had been hanging around ) we had to route even further out of our path, to avoid the weather, which meant that we came quite close to the Birmingham zone, I don't want a bollocking for straying in there without clearance.

It is good to see Thomson at coventry, but they do not own the airfield, and therefore should not expect any preferential treatment, there are others here as well!!.

I flew with Thomson to Austria earlier this year, .....quite good for a budget airline, and my compliments the captain that brought us in safely in near white out conditions, must have been ILS,..superb airmanship if a humble heli pilot to be may say so!!.

:E :ok:

26th May 2005, 08:32
It is good to see Thomson at coventry, but they do not own the airfield, and therefore should not expect any preferential treatment, there are others here as well!!.

Actually, I don't want to be the bearer of bad news however they (well TUI) do own the 'field. :(

26th May 2005, 08:41
TC You are right, I just found out, i thought it was still Air Atlantique.
However I have also been told that Coventry Council own the airfield but it is operated by TUI, who I beleive are a german company........is this also correct??

26th May 2005, 08:59
Hmmm not 100% sure, I though TUI bought it off Air Atlantique.. however they could just be operating the place. The only press release I found on the subject says "The complete take-over of Coventry airport with its strategically favourable location gives TUI its own home airport for the new fleet which has tremendous opportunities for growth" So dunno if that means they own it or just operate it on the councils behalf. :confused:

But yes, Tui is a Germany company.

26th May 2005, 10:52
"""Good god, Argonautist, if you think that's "the most complex bit of sky around in the UK", you need to get out more matey!
You should come down to Brizzel and you'll soon realise you have it easy""""

"Brizzel" doesnt seem too bad, might seem tight for traffic between you and lyneham, but remember we have Birmingham with its numerous airspace sections, and as for East Mids, well hell if thats not a puzzle, i dont even think their controllers must know the sector altitude for each bit, because theres that many now! then we have the usual gliding spots, that hold international competitions, and being central, we're in the way for peeps heading north to south, east to west, round-robins and vice versa. much of that is because it provides a gap in open FIR for the transiters as we have no controlled airspace and making it easier, no SSR which im sure you boys in bristol do.

Maybe for the controllers at Coventry, with having a such an un-moderated high level of traffic for the majority of the daytime with most of it transiting traffic maybe a healthy LARS may be a good idea as a good gainer for the airport, as its so busy, im sure sensible pilots would promote the use of the service?

Standard Noise
27th May 2005, 01:29
Argonautist, as an ex-Cov controller, I know the airspace, and I never said working at Cov was easy. We used to provide a sort of unofficial LARS service and no, it wasn't easy on primary, but then again, SSR is no use when the little buggers won't actually switch their transponders on! As a radar man using SSR, I can use the mode C for separation purposes (if it's showing), even if I'm not talking to the puddle jumper. No mode A or C and I might as well be using primary. Yes SSR is useful, but it's not a cure all.

As for getting authority to provide an official LARS at Cov, well, the SATCO of the day did consider it, but when the airport management realised it meant employing two more radar rated ATCOs, it was considered too costly.

Let's get things into perspective though, none of what you have mentioned makes a case for the area round Cov as being "the most complex bit of sky around in the UK". As I said, you should get out more and have a look around at other bits of the UK airspace, it might put Cov's little world into perspective. If I had a pound for every [email protected] little puddle jumper that went through the Bath gap without talking to us last Saturday morning, I'd only have to work part time. We're never done giving avoiding action to our inbounds and outbounds because too many 'Saturday fliers' can't be arsed to call us. Don't get me wrong, they have a right to be there, but we're paid to provide a LARS service to all and sundry (we don't charge for it, we don't bite and for the most part, we're friendly and helpful), so why don't they call us? Bad training from flying clubs, laziness, scared to in case we brush them off? Who knows.

We have every scenario you mention in your second paragraph and more, but no point in 'willy waving'. The guys at Cov (well, the ones who've been there since before 1998) are a great bunch and do a fabulous job, but most of the older ones are long enough in the tooth to agree that, no, while it is challenging and maybe even difficult at times, it isn't the most complex bit of airspace in the UK.

topcat & cyclic - As I remember, Air Antique originally took out a 125 year lease to run the airport from the less than useless Cov City Council. Not sure how the deal progressed after that. To be honest, despite richer and more successful companies being in the running at the time, we reckoned the City Council thought that AA would cock it up and they (CCC) would see the demise/closure of the 'millstone' without taking the blame for the loss of so many jobs. Which is what they wanted without actually saying it in public. Thankfully, they were wrong and it seems to be going from strength to strength.

27th May 2005, 11:25
I have little sympathy for Thomson and the Cov atz. If the flights cannot operate in class G along with other users, then Cov should apply for bigger airspace, or turn into Birmingham airspace for protection. (or Thomson should operate from a proper airport).

The situation was not helped by certain Cov controllers phoning the local airfields demanding that anyone going nearer than 10 miles to their atz must call them.

And as to the training establishments there...C152's downwind 23 over the cement works? Any small aircraft doing circuits outside the atz is very poor airmanship, since the zone protects them from en route traffic.


At least Bristol has a proper zone.

27th May 2005, 16:45
Standard Noise ..........asked a couple of questions today. it seems AA sold to TUI for 1.8 million....but that is not gospel....my buddy is not a perfect oracle.

27th May 2005, 17:44
That ought to pay for a few spare engines. :)

DubTrub has a very good point though... they started up there knowing it was class G and the inherant issues that brings with it. Sounds like they want all the facilities and benefits of being at BHX but without the costs.

28th May 2005, 06:23
I do a lot of autorotation training between Draycote and the cement works at Long Itchington, but that is so that I am not fouling up the circuit at Coventry.
Having said that I was in the cicuit yesterday afternoon, and it was busy busy busy.
Heard on pilot call for a touch and go, the atco gave a very terse "negative".
All sorts of things were happening.......Thomson, Royal Mail, an Electra diong engine run up's, the fixed wing school in the circuit, another heli as well as myself in the circuit,....and to top it all someone wouldn't answer his radio.
All in all I think that the young lady and the gentleman handling the traffic did an excellent job.

31st May 2005, 07:49
"or Thomson should operate from a proper airport"

Oh heavens - do you mean we've all been working at a make-believe airport all these years? Quick - someone explain the difference so that I don't make the same mistake again.

PPRuNe Radar
31st May 2005, 13:41
If the puddlejumper is approaching from the Thomsonflys right hand side, then the Thomsonfly should give way in accordance with the Rules of the Air.

ATPLs will know this of course