We’ve had a mixed but positive start to 2017, and although the winter weather poses its usual challenges, We’d like to take a moment to give an overview of our plans this year.
In December 2016 we undertook our annual Customer Survey. This year we had over 250 responses. Overwhelmingly we received positive feedback, this year more than ever before, reflecting on the various improvements we continue to make to the airfield and the facilities we provide.
However, this does not mean that we are standing still. We have more improvements than ever planned and I’ll provide a short summary of these here;
Just over two years ago, we took over the management of the Airfield’s Cafe. Now renamed as Runway 26, we’ve succeeded in meeting our objectives to return the facility to a more open, customer friendly environment, welcoming and encouraging more public visitors as well as providing the facilities that pilot’s desire. However, our continued development of the facility is not yet complete. We will soon be re-introducing a new improved play frame for our family visitors. We will be installing new heating to help boost the inside temperatures during the colder months and installing a new flooring and providing additional seating. Most importantly of all, we will be renovating the toilet facilities to increase capacity and modernise. Lastly, for several years the facility has been closed on Mondays. This will be no longer the case, and we are pleased to announce that as from Monday 27th March, Runway 26 will be open 7 days a week permanently.
In recent years, we have invested significant expenditure in providing improvements to our main runways. In 2016, runway 08L/26R was re-declared with improved licensed distances, and the entire runway length was re-graded, creating a massively improved smooth grass surface. This has also firmed up the surface making for a more durable surface.
This year, commencing within a few weeks, we will be re-grading the largest amount of work yet in any given year. This will entail grading an additional section of Runway 08R/26L, grading the entire taxiway from B1 hold to B3 hold, a section of runway 14/32 and an area adjacent to the fuel tank Installation by the tower. A separate Operations Notice will be published shortly describing some temporary procedures and restrictions to accommodate the works.
In recent weeks, we have seen a tremendous amount of rainfall. In fact just recently we had over 12mm of rainfall within 24 hours and in the last 7 days we have seen over 3 weeks average rainfall. This has unfortunately resulted in extensive flooding causing our runways to be closed for fixed winged use. However, we do have an extensive network of drains and once the rains ease off, we do see a very quick recovery providing the rain holds off, allowing our drainage to do its work. Later this year, we plan to install further drains in key areas which will continue to increase this recovery time. This combined with the improved graded and firmer surface will continue to provide us with a durable runway condition as best can be expected from a grass surface.
Even with the above improvements, we can confirm that our longer term aim is to install ‘Perfo’ re-enforcement matting to Runway 08L/26R, and the grading and drainage works are part of our preparatory plan to get the surface ready to accept this matting. This will provide us with an all weather runway, further reducing restrictions and improving safety performance.
Lastly, many will be aware of the plans for a new Hangar at the airfield. This will replace Hangar 2, at the rear of Runway 26 Café, with a much larger facility, allowing us to accommodate additional aircraft that are presently residing on our waiting list as well as providing additional office space for let. We fully anticipate this project to complete during 2017.
These developments will provide additional income in the airfield, which will ensure that we can provide a viable business model for the airfield ensuring its continuing ability to prosper as a premier General Aviation facility within the North West.
Stay tuned to our Social Media for regular updates on our activities.
We very much look forward to an exciting year ahead and we wish all our customers a safe and enjoyable year.
Customers are advised that with effect from 3rd March 2017, the following revised prices are in effect, due to a change in price from our supplier;
Avgas 100LL – £1.47/litre plus VAT
Avgas UL91 – £1.47/litre plus VAT
Jet A1 – £0.80/litre plus VAT
Customers are advised that with effect from 6th February 2017, the following revised prices are in effect, due to a change in price from our supplier;
Avgas 100LL – £1.46/litre plus VAT
Avgas UL91 – £1.46/litre plus VAT
Jet A1 – £0.80/litre plus VAT
Customers are advised that with effect from 4th January 2017, the following revised prices are in effect, due to a change in price from our supplier;
Avgas 100LL – £1.43/litre plus VAT
Avgas UL91 – £1.43/litre plus VAT
Jet A1 – £0.79/litre plus VAT
As we move into a new year here at City Airport & Heliport (we’ll be 87 years old on 30th January), we thought we’d take a quick look back at what 2016 has brought us.
Following an extremely wet start, through the year we have seen a growing number of movements and activity, with 2016 being the busiest year since 2008.
Our Runway 26 Cafe and Bar has continued to grow and improve, this combined with the wider appeal to visiting public has increased the general visitor footfall to the airport along with the regular and popular monthly iQuiz. We also held our first Local Community Open Evening where we could explain how we operate and the planned improvements and developments.
In May 2016, the Friends of Barton Aerodrome (FOBA) was formed. This is a new organisation, set up to support the airport and promote the airport’s activities and events. It’s launch was met with overwhelming success, with over 160 members and growing. FOBA plans to continue to grow and provide more for its members into 2017.
City Airport has seen an increasing number of visiting aircraft and helicopters, including regular military helicopters which always prove to be popular with enthusiasts.
In February, the airport featured in Pilot Magazine. The article gave a full and independent review of the Airport. We also conducted grading to a significant portion of our main runway, giving improved drainage and a much smoother surface.
The former Airport ‘Terminal’ building was handed to the Veterans’ Garage, an exciting project aiming to refurbish the building to provide vibrant and useful space which will benefit ex-servicemen/women and the wider community.
Also in 2016 we had a Spitfire Fly-Past at our Family Fun Weekend, a Wedding Proposal, a visit from the historic Aer Lingus Iolar aircraft and we hosted a visit by a large number of Microlights taking part in the Light Aircraft Association UK Rally. We welcomed the International UK Flight Information Service Association, hosted our 4th annual Firework Spectacular and featured on BBC TV Series ‘My Girl’. We also received a plaque from the Transport Trust, celebrating the heritage value of the Airport, and in December we welcomed Santa by Helicopter to our Children’s Christmas Parties.
We have an exciting year ahead in 2017. We are currently running our Annual Customer Survey and the information received from this will help shape our plans for the year ahead. You can take part in our Survey at www.cityairportandheliport.com/customer-survey
Already in planning are a full refurbishment of our toilet facilities within Runway 26 and the Control Tower and further significant continued Runway and taxiway grading works. We are also excited to announce that we will be introducing a new HD streaming webcam. We have various exciting events currently in planning which will be announced in due course, and we welcome the North West American Car Club who are meeting monthly at City Airport from February. Planning permission has been granted for our new Hangar which we expect to progress over the Summer.
We would like to thank our visitors, pilots and all other customers a very Happy and prosperous New Year and we look forward to continuing our story, welcoming you to City Airport & Heliport throughout the year ahead.
Children in Manchester had an early Christmas treat when Santa arrived at City Airport, on a different mode of air transport from usual, to deliver presents and bring festive cheer.
There were no reindeers or sleigh in sight, as Santa ditched his usual way of flying for a stylish helicopter ride into City Airport. On Sunday 4th and Sunday 11th December Santa flew in to deliver presents to groups of children who rushed to meet the jolly man in red as he disembarked from his flight.
The Christmas Parties were held by our Runway 26 café and were a big hit with families with more than one hundred children coming along to meet Santa and take part in the activities. The parties included tricks and hocus pocus from a professional entertainer, party games, festive sing-alongs and tasty treats in the form of a special Pilot’s Lunchbox.
Nick Duriez, Director of City Airport & Heliport said, “We love to host a special Christmas event each year and seeing the wonder on the faces of the children as Santa arrives by helicopter is what makes Christmas so special. We are always pleased to see so many people turning up to enjoy the festivities and help us celebrate at this special time of the year.”
City Airport & Heliport arranges events for families throughout the year with the Christmas Party being just one of them. If you would like to find out more about our events please click here.
Customers are advised that with effect from 2nd December 2016, the following revised prices are in effect, due to a change in price from our supplier;
Avgas 100LL – £1.36/litre plus VAT
Avgas UL91 – £1.36/litre plus VAT
Jet A1 – £0.76/litre plus VAT
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