VIDEO: Aerodrome Closed: Could Yours be Next?

PLEASE CLICK HERE TO WATCH VIDEO ON YOUTUBE (THE FLYING REPORTER) – or click on the story title above and then the link.

‘The Flying Reporter,’ Jon Hunt, takes a somewhat sceptical view on whether anything is being done that is actually likely to stop UK airfields closing.

There are kind mentions of the GAAC’s good work (and airfield-closure statistics), and an interview with Matt Wilkins, the new Chair of the Airfields Working Group of the APPG for Aviation (He also runs Old Buckenham Airfield).

Matt replaced GAAC Vice-Chair John Gilder, who was ousted as Chair somewhat unexpectedly, but did an excellent job while also continuing his focus on GAAC behind-the-scenes work for various airfields. APPG was not the same after APPG super-chair Grant Shapps and its capable secretariat was lost around the time of Covid-19 and the last election, but let’s hope it can now regroup properly (perhaps after the 2024 election!)

Jon Hunt recognises the work of GAAC, describing it as “really busy work behind the scenes trying to keep things going” – note this has been mainly the unsung work done by John Gilder and Ann Bartaby helping many UK airfields with planning and other issues. John is continuing this work while Ann has decided to gradually retire, so (please note!) John is looking for someone else to assist him in this valuable voluntary work (can we ever find someone as capable as Ann?)

The GA community really needs to heed Jon Hunt’s last observation in his video: “Isn’t it time to come together now as one, united voice?” This is what the GAAC and – to link into Parliament/Government at the highest levels – the APPG for Aviation are all about, along with the various GAAC supporting organisations (AOPA, LAA, BMAA, BGA, BWPA, HCAP, BHA, AOG, FFA etc).

As the Americans, who are lucky enough to have a great network of state-owned aerodromes, would say, “That’s the $64,000 question.” Can we all come together and come up with a solution – and cement the Strategic Airfield Network in law.

Finally, it has to be said: Great Work Jon Hunt/The Flying Reporter – Keep the Videos coming and good luck keeping it going! See him at Private Flyer at Booker later in May – he’s helping organiser Alex Ayling with a new format. Let’s pray for good weather!

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