Procedures for Fixed Wing

For the first time visitor, flying in to City Airport (Manchester Barton) can appear to be daunting. However, most would agree that its really quite simple. The information provided here is intended to give further guidance to help you plan your flight.

Arriving from the South (via the Low Level Route)

You will need to follow the Manchester Low Level Route which starts just North of Ashcroft Farm Strip. The max altitude in the route is 1300 feet Manchester QNH. You can obtain a Basic Service from Manchester Approach on 118.575 mhz, though clearance to transit the route is not required. See the listening squawk information below.

Once you reach abeam Stretton VRP, you can then turn right and change to Barton Information on 120.250 mhz. As you approach the airfield, you will see a bridge across the Canal and just beyond a large Indoor Ski Slope building which is quite prominent. The M62 approaches passes about 1/2 mile North of the airfield. Barton is to the left of the canal and before the bridge by about 1/2 mile.

Arriving from the North

You can call Barton Information before you approach the airfield around 5 miles out. The airspace is class G up to 2000 ft QNH and there is no requirement to talk to Manchester when transiting to/from the airfield.

Joining the Circuit

The Standard Circuit Join is to approach the field overhead at 1800 feet on the Barton QFE. Then to commence a descent on the deadside to circuit height of 1000 feet Barton QFE. Keep a good lookout for other aircraft that may be joining the same circuit pattern.

Non Radio aircraft (Remember we are PPR Tel 0161 789 1362) should overfly and observe the signals square to check the current runway in use and circuit direction.

Fixed Winged pilots are advised that the helicopter training circuits are carried out at 500 feet underneath the fixed wing circuit. The helicopter circuit climbout and final approach however, remain clear of the runway in use.

Overhead joins are at 1800ft Barton QFE, Circuit Height for Fixed Wing 1000ft QFE.

Barton Conspicuity Squawk

Once you are in contact with Barton Information, you will be asked to squawk our Conspicuity Transponder Code. You can find details of this here.

Using the Manchester Low Level Route


To help Manchester ATC reduce zone infringements the above squawk is for use by pilots flying within 5 miles of the Manchester CTR boundary (outside it, of course!) and also monitoring Manchester Approach 118.575 Mhz just as a “listening watch” – without talking to Manchester.

  • You are asked to Squawk 7366 (Charlie if possible) to show you are listening in. Please do not talk to Manchester whilst Squawking 7366.
  • You will not be in receipt of any ATC service.
  • You cannot cross into controlled airspace.
  • You can be ‘addressed’ by Manchester Approach 118.575 Mhz if there is any reason to do so as Manchester ATC know which frequency you are listening out on!
  • Remember to Squawk 7000 (Charlie if possible) as you move further away from the boundary, or if you change to a different frequency.

To further assist with navigating the Low Level Route, you can download a handy A5 size briefing form.

Low Level Route Brief Front

Low Level Route Brief Back

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