Blackpool Airport came back into Blackpool Council’s control in March this year following a lengthy review. Transfer of the CAA licences to operate the airport into BAOL Company’s name and under its direct control, is an early step in achieving the airport’s longer term goals which are:
- to maximise opportunities or growth
- to achieve a greater level of control and flexibility to take sound investment decisions
- to be more efficient and cost effective
- to ensure a long-term, sustainable future for one of England’s oldest airports and a key strategic asset for the Fylde Coast
Blackpool Council reacquired Blackpool Airport from Balfour Beatty in September 2017 for £4.25m via its ownership of Blackpool Airport Operations Ltd and Blackpool Airport Property Ltd, to save it from the risk of permanent closure and to secure its long-term future as part of the Blackpool Airport Enterprise Zone.
To date Blackpool Council has invested nearly £2m in the upgrade and maintenance of essential infrastructure, with further significant investment planned.
A masterplan of the airport sets out:
- The relocation of the Air Traffic Control tower to allow for the development of the airport. This may be combined with the Rescue & Fire Fighting Services and engineering facilities to provide a new hub for air control, servicing and safety.
- The relocation of existing airport occupiers and hangers from the front of Squires Gate Lane into new facilities proposed southwards within the airport zone. This provides the opportunity to develop the land toward Squires gate lane as part of a ‘Knowledge Quarter.’
- New proposed hangers and associated facilities which have been zoned into commercial + administrative, maintenance and general aviation and have been designed to allow for maximum flexibility and future growth.
- Works to the ends of the main runway would allow for ease of aircraft taxiing and manoeuvrability in turn providing smoother operations for flights in and out of the airport.
- A portion of land for a solar farm providing sustainable resources and energy which is key in the future of the Enterprise Zone.