Located just 12 miles from the city centre, London Biggin Hill Airport offers a choice of two FBOs, extensive hangarage, a six-minute helicopter transfer service to and from central London, and comprehensive aircraft support and maintenance services. As an aviation hub, the airport is also home to more than 70 aviation businesses. Head of Marketing Andy Patsalides answered EVA’s questions
London Biggin Hill Airport boasts a dramatic heritage, as well as being an important aerospace hub and providing key business aviation access into the city. What FBO, hangarage and ramp space do you have available for your private aviation customers?
We have two full-service FBOs and, in keeping with our dedication to ensuring safe, discreet and rapid transfers for passengers through the airport, we offer direct ramp access for ground or helicopter transfers. Plans are also advanced for the development of a new FBO terminal.
The airport offers a comprehensive range of business aviation and ground handling support services for all business jet types including BBJs and ACJs. Equipment includes tugs, de-icing rig, belt loader and baggage carts, GPUs and steps for aircraft up to BBJ/ACJ size.
Biggin Hill airport is independent, but what about its FBOs?
London Biggin Hill Airport is privately owned, but one of its FBOs is run by Signature. We aim to provide a great choice for passengers and ensure the best possible service for all our customers.
What facilities do you provide for your passengers?
London Biggin Hill Airport provides a large and comprehensive number of services to its passengers, including the SkyPets dedicated animal handling service, which makes it the most pet-friendly general aviation airport in the UK. This exclusive service for owners and their pets on average sees more than 2,000 animals pass through the airport each year.
The London Heli Shuttle, operated by Castle Air, offers airport customers the quickest route to central London, with a flight time of just six minutes, but there are also a number of ground transfer options.
The airport offers custom in-flight menus through its recommended caterer, Air Culinaire Worldwide, which is located on-site and able to accommodate every dietary requirement. And while we complete construction of our own airport hotel, handling agents are able to recommend and book hotels with the advantage of reduced rates.
What facilities do you provide for your crews?
London Biggin Hill Airport’s first on-site hotel, The Landing, is under construction and due for completion later this year. The 4-star, 56-bedroom boutique hotel is primarily intended for crew who frequently fly in and out of the airport, as well as engineers and other employees of the numerous resident aerospace businesses based at the airport. The Landing will also have a bar, restaurant, lounge area and gym.
What facilities do you provide for aircraft?
London Biggin Hill Airport enjoys a first-rate reputation as a UK business aviation centre of excellence and is an ecosystem of varied and innovative aviation businesses. Its 70-plus resident companies employ more than 1,000 aviation specialists across the 500-acre site.
We have more MROs based at the airport than any other in Europe, including Bombardier, Embraer and Oriens Aviation, ensuring that most aircraft types are catered for.
As a result, the airport is able to offer high-level services to every aircraft, including first- and second-line maintenance, emergency technical support, parts, avionics assistance and completions.
How does the London Heli Shuttle work?
At just six minutes, the London Heli Shuttle is the quickest and most seamless transfer to and from central London. Located 12 miles from the centre of the city, London Biggin Hill Airport is the only dedicated business aviation airport within the capital. The airport-based fleet of helicopters has remained operational throughout Covid-19 and includes six-passenger Leonardo AW109s and 12-passenger AW139s that fly single- and dual-pilot under IFR and VFR.
Attitudes to fuel and sustainability vary between regions. I know you offer sustainable aviation fuel and take sustainability seriously. What about your customers?
London Biggin Hill Airport was the first in London to offer sustainable aviation fuel and we have seen a record uplift in its use recently, reflecting the increase in awareness and desire for aviation to become more sustainable. The airport offers a highly sustainable SAF blend that highlights its commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It’s also an important step in the airport’s journey to becoming carbon neutral by 2029, as outlined in our Sustainability Statement.
What’s next for Biggin Hill? Does the future look positive?
We certainly hope the worst of Covid-19 is behind us, although we did remain fully operational throughout the pandemic, and introduced our Contactless Travel initiative as well as opening an on-site PCR centre, the Mansi Testing Suite.
There are a number of exciting developments and investments taking place at the airport, including an FBO upgrade and The Landing hotel. In addition, Bombardier will be opening its new customer service centre later this year, providing a 250,000sqft state-of-the-art, innovative and sustainable facility capable of housing up to 14 Global 7500 aircraft at any one time.
London Biggin Hill Airport is committed to innovation and the future of aviation and we will continue to prioritise investment and development at the airport. We are also focusing on working in partnership with resident businesses to help achieve sustainability and meet our goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2029.