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Biggin Hill Airport To Cut Light Aircraft Activity- Cuts ALL training

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Biggin Hill Airport To Cut Light Aircraft Activity- Cuts ALL training

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Old 13th Mar 2018, 01:29
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Biggin Hill Airport To Cut Light Aircraft Activity- Cuts ALL training

Biggin Hill Airport To Cut Light Aircraft Activity
March 12, 2018 Cllr. Neil Reddin

From https:// hayesandconeyhall. org. uk/2018/03/12/biggin-hill-airport-to-cut-light-aircraft-activity/

Biggin Hill Airport has informed its landlord Bromley Council that they are actively looking to reduce the overall volume of light aviation at the Airport.

They anticipate that light aviation movements will decline from approximately 35,000 movements annually to around 12,000. In order to achieve this reduction, we understand that the Airport have now served notices to terminate the leases of the resident flying schools, with informal discussions going on for some time now, and with the Airport already having the agreement of nearby light aviation aerodromes, Redhill, Surrey and Damyns Hall Farm, Essex, to accept these businesses should they choose to relocate.

The Airport also said that this was a difficult decision for them to take given the longstanding nature of some of the training schools, but that they are no longer able to mix a high volume of light aviation with growing business aviation whilst maintaining high levels of customer service and all importantly, flight safety.

For the avoidance of doubt and for clarity, the Council has stressed that the Lease and the controls within it, including the Noise Action Plan, remain in place and are not affected by the Airport’s decision.

Residents living under existing light aircraft flight tracks, particularly in and around Keston, should notice the reduced volume of aircraft fairly quickly as the changes come into effect over the next 6 months or so with related training flights stopping.

In terms of overall movement numbers, the Airport envisage that in this time period aircraft movements will decline from around 50,000 movements per annum to somewhere around 30,000 movements per annum.
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 03:53
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And when the next recession comes around, and the Bizjet business goes slack...let them eat cake.
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 10:05
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These flying schools are more than welcome to relocate to Charleville-Mézières (LFQV) in NE France where investment is taking place for extra light GA activity! Plenty of airspace around there too..

Cheers
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 10:52
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What an incredibly short sighted view...... only in Britain ?? I thought Redhill was under threat of closure. Out of the frying pan into the fire??

Last edited by Planemike; 13th Mar 2018 at 11:03.
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 11:42
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Just a month or so ago, they issued a statement saying they were committed to GA.... I don't understand why they are not honest and say why they want us out!

I'd like to believe that jets are MUCH more noisy than SEPs or even MEPs - so it can't be noise!

These movement numbers are VERY low... In fact they're only slightly higher than Schiphol gets in a month, but spread over the whole year!! Schiphol still accepts GA (albeit a little pricey handling charge...) - Southend copes perfectly well, as does IOM, Gloucester amongst many others - why can't Biggin Hill do it?
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 12:18
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Just a month or so ago, they issued a statement saying they were committed to GA
Business aviation counts as GA as well.
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 16:33
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Originally Posted by alex90 View Post
why can't Biggin Hill do it?
cos they don't want to...!
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 18:50
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Originally Posted by alex90 View Post
Just a month or so ago, they issued a statement saying they were committed to GA.... I don't understand why they are not honest and say why they want us out!

I'd like to believe that jets are MUCH more noisy than SEPs or even MEPs - so it can't be noise!

These movement numbers are VERY low... In fact they're only slightly higher than Schiphol gets in a month, but spread over the whole year!! Schiphol still accepts GA (albeit a little pricey handling charge...) - Southend copes perfectly well, as does IOM, Gloucester amongst many others - why can't Biggin Hill do it?
Unlike Biggin, Schipol has a plentful supply of runways, several of which are in use at any one time, and they seem to have added another runway every time I've been there.
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 20:52
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A couple of parking slots for anyone @ Duxford if interested......
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 22:53
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Originally Posted by robin View Post
cos they don't want to...!
American airfields mix light aircraft and biz jets no problem. I reckon this is sheer bloody snobbery; it's not the Biggin I grew up with, nor did Will Curtis.
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 11:16
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Originally Posted by chevvron View Post
Unlike Biggin, Schipol has a plentful supply of runways, several of which are in use at any one time, and they seem to have added another runway every time I've been there.
Haha - so true.. I often hear from people who fly commercially there that they spend longer on the ground getting to the runway than in the air coming back to the UK. But if you land on their "GA" runway you still share it with a large number of jets, and they fit you in very easily without any issues!

Biggin Hill did have several other runways... 29/11 until very recently, Charlie used to be a runway, and there were several grass runways there at one point too! When I was training, 29 would frequently be in use at the same time as 21, without any issues. I don't think that's the issue, the issue is that Biggin seems to think that the 20 or 30 jets they get on a busy day don't mix with the likes of SEP and MEPs.

Even with a single runway, Gatwick handles this number of movement per hour at their peak, not per day!

So yes, I am a little upset about the loss of "light" GA at Biggin Hill... I feel as though now people in the South and South-East of London only have Fairoaks (also under threat I heard and no IAPs), Thurrock (no IAPs), Blackbushe (no IAPs), or fly out of Southend who also have hard runways and IAPs (and still welcome light GA).

The only other options who still accept GA, are Lydd, Shoreham (who currently doesnt have IAPs due controller staffing), Southampton, Cambridge or Oxford which have hard runways and IAPs and none of these are particularly close to London...

(hard runways are important due to wet weather, lights are important because some of us land at night, and IAPs are important because some of us fly approaches regularly...)

Last edited by alex90; 14th Mar 2018 at 11:23. Reason: added lights bit
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 11:37
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Forget Southampton for anything other than a quick visit. Anything more and the parking (if available overnight) is very expensive, even more if you are forced to use a Handling Agent.

As for a training base, forget it, the flying schools were turfed out about 10 years ago, Biggin just following a trend.
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 12:42
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Blackbushe? Very quiet with good access to motorways.
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 13:04
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Biggin just following a trend.
Looking on from a distance, I am afraid this is the correct observation. What drives UK aerodrome operators (who seem to be mostly private venture) to chase off part of their custom is beyond me, though. But aerodromes on the continent, both public and private, appear to be in a similar evolution so there must be some fundamental ground to it.
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 13:32
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Originally Posted by Jan Olieslagers View Post
Looking on from a distance, I am afraid this is the correct observation. What drives UK aerodrome operators (who seem to be mostly private venture) to chase off part of their custom is beyond me, though. But aerodromes on the continent, both public and private, appear to be in a similar evolution so there must be some fundamental ground to it.
Maybe just simply another part of the ongoing genocide on individual mobility?
Look at discussion items of the current ideological war against Diesel engines.
Politicians once again want us citizens confined, calm, quiet, shut our mouth.
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 15:20
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Death by a thousand cuts

Sorry as I am, it come as no surprise that this is happening.
GA and 'clubs' have no clout when it comes to 'business owners' directing their focus on generating income and at the same time being seen to reduce an ongoing nuisance potential.
What surprises me is that the 'users' did not see this coming and stand against it.
The problem is there is no where else for them to go in that general area plus it will just add to the pressure at the surviving airfields. Biggin has always been a 'feeder' unit for aspiring commercial pilots, and as such has been a real service provider to the airlines. I remember when in 1959 Croydon closed, and the Surrey flying club flew out to their new base at Biggin to become the S&K flying club. The numbers of clubs soon flourished due to A:- The Need, and B:- the encouragement from the then new leaseholder to GET PEOPLE FLYING.
The input to both the local economy and the many jobs created was a win win for everyone, and the 'nuisance reporting' factor was mainly from people who bought 'new build' properties in the locality and then complained about the aircraft.
I would like to think that certain well established clubs at Biggin will even now be joining together and pooling their legal resources to fight this unfair and unreasonable situation,because if Biggin falls then GA in this country will be going nowhere fast.

Last edited by POBJOY; 14th Mar 2018 at 18:09.
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 16:33
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Like golf courses, aerodromes take up a lot of acreage for relatively low density activity. Around here, we have lost three thriving aerodromes, with a fourth on the chopping block, yet I see more golf courses open. And those embedded in the city seem to remain and thrive. Yes, golf courses are less noisy that aerodromes, but perhaps more to the point is what I hear people are willing to pay to play golf!

The owner of the property may choose to exploit the greater value from their investment - that won't be aircraft use! Most of society don't really want an aerodrome, so make no effort to sustain one, and surely won't pay toward it! Who's left to pay - the users....
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Old 14th Mar 2018, 22:10
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Once the light aircraft business has gone, they will find in a while that business aviation will not take money by itself, and they will be 'forced' to sell the whole area for house building. Which is probably the long term plan anyway. And Bromley Council, as landlords, will be happy, as they will be able to meet the governments housebuilding requirements, and make some money for themselves to boot.
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Old 15th Mar 2018, 09:39
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Originally Posted by POBJOY View Post
Sorry as I am, it come as no surprise that this is happening.
GA and 'clubs' have no clout when it comes to 'business owners' directing their focus on generating income and at the same time being seen to reduce an ongoing nuisance potential.
What surprises me is that the 'users' did not see this coming and stand against it.

I am still confused with what you are saying POBJOY, I do understand the words, but fail to see how a business would consider stopping to sell to half its customers, and think it good business decision making.

We are not "freeloaders", we pay for hangar / properties on the airfield exactly as the jets do, we pay around £15 per touch and go, and around £30 per full stop landing, £50 for an ILS approach if not IMC, in addition to outdoor parking charges which I know for fact are higher than hangar charges in many other airfields. So perhaps yes, we don't pay the £110 - £300 per landing of a light jet, or the £2100+ to land an A319, but we also don't cause as much damage to the runway when landing, we don't aggravate neighbours as much as the jets and we can easily fill the gaps in their (let's be honest...) very few jet movements they have each day! (I gave a figure up there saying that the number of movements was roughly what Gatwick handles in a peak hour, that Biggin handles in a day). It isn't by kicking us out that they'll suddenly have another 100 jet movements a day!

I think if you total up all the properties that are "leased" to light GA (inc maintenance facilities), all the aircraft parking outside, all the movement charges for light GA, and all additional services provided to light GA by the airfield, I would be very surprised if this isn't significant income that they will lose. Regardless of the fact that property (leased) prices will inevitably decrease on the airfield due to the sudden higher supply versus demand from the big jet companies.

I do think its a mistake, but I am saddened by the fact that there really is nowhere else to go for someone who frequently flies IFR/IMC/Night/Winter other than Southend, Lydd, Shoreham (but not right now), Cambridge or Oxford - all of which are quite a distance from Central London - Southend might be the best candidate as they have a train station now!

and the 'nuisance reporting' factor was mainly from people who bought 'new build' properties in the locality and then complained about the aircraft.
I heard that some of these people were highly intelligent, high powered people (whatever that means) and yet they failed to do a little research to realise that the overpriced house they were thinking of purchasing was actually very close to an aerodrome which had been in nigh-on constant use since 1916... I feel as though these people have absolutely no right to complain about it.
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Old 15th Mar 2018, 10:10
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I often cycle up a road across the valley from Biggin Hill - within the circuit - at around 5:30pm on nice evenings and usually stop for a breather at either end.

In that period of about half an hour I'll probably see two or three PA-28s or C152s, maybe an Agusta 109 doing the Battersea shuttle, if I'm lucky a Spitfire, and possibly one or two biz jets. Occasionally one of the light aircraft will do an orbit or two while something big and paraffin-fuelled slides down the ILS.

When I was kid and went up to the airfield spotting, circuit traffic was continuous on a nice day and any executive movements - and there were a few Lears, Citations and the like - slotted in without fuss.

I heard that some of these people were highly intelligent, high powered people (whatever that means) and yet they failed to do a little research to realise that the overpriced house they were thinking of purchasing was actually very close to an aerodrome which had been in nigh-on constant use since 1916... I feel as though these people have absolutely no right to complain about it.
Friend was recently two day's shy of signing the contract selling his house; his purchaser was forced to pull out because the purchaser of his flat had suddenly decided that Crystal Palace FC was too close...
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