A Positive Future For Filton
Here at Save Filton Airfield, we have more vision for the
airfield than just houses!
We believe that with the right support from SGC and the British
Government, Filton can be part of the push to lift Great Britain
out of her economic woes. House-building does provide jobs, but
they are short-term and often filled by employees from outside
the region. Instead, we see the site working in synergy with the
facilities we already have to make it a hub for economic growth.
We are NOT
proposing an airport - residential growth and
public opinion in the area have already ruled this out. However,
we do propose a varied and balanced use for the site. We hope to
have the airfield to be designated as a mini-enterprise zone to
allow entrepreneurial development and investment. We are
lobbying the Department for Business, Industry and Skills in
this respect. With such support, we would hope to pursuade BAE
Systems to lease the airfield to a not-for-profit trust at
Below is a summary of our vision.
Filton Airfield is unique in southern England. It has a runway
suited to any modern jet, small or large, coupled with an
at-level railway line which connects the the Great Western
Mainline with the seaport at Avonmouth. This presents an
opportunity for a multi-modal international freight terminal.
Peel Holdings are already proposing a similar scheme for the
north of England at Salford. Potential clients include:
- China Shipping, OOCL, Maersk, P&O, Hapag-Lloyd etc...
- FedEx, DHL, etc.
The site is already host to several aerospace businesses. But
with the opening of the National Composites Centre
nearby at Emerson's Green, supported by Airbus and GKN, there is genuine scope
for the research to lead into the prototyping of fully composite
aircraft. By keeping the runway, Airbus and GKN also have the ongoing opportunity to win and retain future manufacturing contracts for exciting projects such as the A400M Military Transporter and the A350XWB composite widebody airliner.
Working together with the NCC and Rolls-Royce these companies have the scope to put Bristol back at the centre of the aerospace map by developing the most environmentally friendly aircraft in the world. In addition, the
site is ideal for other aviation activities such as aircraft
and engine maintenance, aircraft livery operations,
conversions and decommissioning.
Filton is the de-facto home of British Aerospace development. A
century of research and development based at the site has
produced a notable line of aircraft, some representing defining
moments in aviation. In particular, there is a strong local
association with civil aircraft development.
We believe that a museum of static and working displays, coupled
to the runway, could represent a huge tourist draw to north
Bristol. The Concorde Trust
has already secured land
and outline planning permission to the north of the runway to
build a museum centred around "Alpha Fox" (G-BOAF) within easy
reach of the motorway network and the mall at Cribbs Causeway.
The runway allows special sightseeing flights to be operated as
an additional part of the experience.
The airfield has played
host to several airshows over the years, being able to host
unique aircraft due to the size of its runway. This should be
leveraged for commercial gain.
Business Aviation and General Aviation
The location of Filton,
close to the centre of Bristol and a short drive from the
Celtic Manor golf resort, has always been a draw for business
commuters. With the growth of the financial sector around
Temple Gate, this is a key marketing opportunity.
Likewise, many smaller airfields make a big deal of providing
facilities for private pilots in order to draw them in and pay
landing fees (as well as getting them to spend money on food,
local tourism and facilities etc.)