New Directional Finder equipment continues Blackpool Airport investment
Blackpool Airport has continued its investment in on-site infrastructure and facilities with the installation of a new VHF Direction Finder.
The HAYSYS Class A equipment (accurate to within two degrees) continues the commitment shown by the airport’s shareholder Blackpool Council to upgrade and enhance the infrastructure in support of the airport’s ten year growth plan.
In addition to the operational benefits the new system brings to both pilots and air traffic controllers at Blackpool, the new system will bring significant benefits with regards to preventing misidentification of the nearby Warton Aerodrome.
Steve Peters, Managing Director of Blackpool Airport, said: “The heritage and history of Blackpool Airport is well known, and we are now looking towards an exciting future which will see us become a leading corporate aircraft, GA and flight training hub.
“We are exploring the possibilities of new hangars and the opportunities for aviation businesses which the surrounding Enterprise Zone brings, as well as a future plan for regional commercial passenger flights, which could benefit from leading sustainable aviation technologies.
“We will also continue to be a great destination for flight training and general aviation activities, and these investments will support customers to enjoy the best experience when operating in and out of Blackpool.”
Blackpool Airport is a thriving hub for business, medevac and general aviation and offers aircraft handling, parking, engineering and refuelling services, flight and instrument training as well as having facilities for executive lounges and crew briefing.
Blackpool Council reacquired Blackpool Airport from Balfour Beatty in September 2017 for £4.25m via its ownership of Blackpool Airport Operations Ltd and Blackpool Airport Property Ltd, to save it from the risk of permanent closure and to secure its long-term future as part of the Blackpool Airport Enterprise Zone.
Over £2 million has already been invested in the 114-year-old airport, including improvements to new airport lighting wiring systems, pavement and runway works, a new voice communication system for Air Traffic Control, on top of the new VDF system. Plans are under way for the development of a new ATC system, new fuel farm and fire station, as well as development of both corporate aircraft and general aviation facilities.
Last year, the airport completed over 40,000 aircraft movements, an increase on the last pre-Covid year in 2019.
After transferring the CAA licences back under the control of the airport in November 2021 and appointing a new managing director, the airport is now implementing a 10-year business plan to increase and grow the profile of the airport, upgrading existing infrastructure and creating a long-term, commercially sustainable, future.
BlueSky Business Aviation News | 12th January 2023 | Issue #684