Major redevelopment is set to make Farnborough one of Europe's premier business airports under the leasehold ownership of TAG Aviation.

The airport, previously the responsibility of the Ministry of Defence, has been managed by TAG since the beginning of the year. TAG assumes full responsibility at the beginning of 2003 on a 99-year lease.

Development plans are far-reaching and include the construction of a runway extension and starter strip. The runway has been resurfaced with a porous friction course, giving excellent landing capability, while a new lighting system has been installed.


The next major job will be the completion of a new state-of-the-art control tower with a dedicated radar system, due to come into service in December 2002.

This development also heralds a brighter future for the Farnborough airshow. A concurrent sub-lease with the SBAC has given the site an unprecedented security of tenure. The SBAC has invested around £2 million ($3 million) to enhance air traffic control facilities as well as establishing an electricity power supply exclusive to the show site.

Farnborough Airport handles around 16,000 movements a year, a number that is expected to increase to 28,000 movements by 2007.


A comfortable departure lounge with refreshments and satellite television caters to passengers who wish to relax before their flight. For the more energetic, there are also two golf courses adjacent to the airport.

"Farnborough Airport is in a great location and we were pleased to be approached by the government to take on the lease," says Len Rayment, TAG Aviation's commercial director. "The site is conveniently located only 25 miles (40km) from Heathrow and three miles from the M3 motorway, making it an ideal choice for development as a hub for private international air travel."


The development is the result of a three-year process that involved much public consultation before plans were finalised.

"We worked closely with the local community and realised we would have to accept certain limitations," Len says. "An example of this is that we voluntarily banned Chapter II aircraft such as the Gulfstream III from landing at the airport."

Even though the new control tower is yet to be completed, the rest of the airport is up and running.

The main runway will remain open to routine fixed wing traffic throughout the show. This will only halt during flying displays

Source: Flight Daily News