Oxford Airport has been approved to provide rescue and
fire (RFFS) services for Cat 5 aircraft for the first time.
Cat 5 status allows for the charter and
provision of niche aircraft shuttles in the 50 to 70-seat category
including such types as the ATR-72, BAe/Avro RJ70, Saab 2000,
Fokker 50 and Dash-8-300 series. For business aviation
movements, Cat 5 approval also means the airport can now handle
jets such as the Embraer Legacy (EMB-135). The first Legacy
aircraft to be based at Oxford will arrive next month and will be
available for commercial charter.
From July, Oxford Airport welcomes weekend
charter flights to and from Jersey, operated by an Air Southwest
Dash-8-300, which will also require Cat 5 RFFS.
The Cat 5 capability also offers
opportunities to cater for charters in the 50-70 seat range for
sporting or special events, conferences and exhibitions around
Oxford, both in-bound to the Thames Valley region and outbound
throughout the UK and overseas.
Passengers utilising private charters for such
events will be able to benefit from fast transit times and the
exclusive ‘VIP’ environment at the airport’s oxfordjet business
aviation terminal, free from the constraints of the mainstream
‘London’ airport alternatives.
As a conference, event and meeting
destination, Oxford Airport, just an hour’s drive from west
London, offers some of the most impressive venues in the UK. These
include Blenheim Palace, just over a mile away and the numerous
Oxford University colleges such as Christchurch – used extensively
as the location of Harry Potter films.
Commenting on the new opportunities, Oxford
Airport’s Head of Marketing and Development, James Dillon-Godfray,
said, “Having recently invested in three high-capacity fire
tenders and doubled the fire crew manning over the last year,
oxfordjet is now ready and fully prepared to accept aircraft types
we have previously had to decline.”
Oxford Airport’s standard opening hours are
between 06:30hrs to 22:30hrs seven days a week with Cat 4 RFFS at
all times. The airport boasts better opening hours and now RFFS
cover than most other general and business aviation airports in
the south east UK and the London region specifically. Oxford
Airport can also open on prior request from 06:00 to midnight.
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