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Norwich International Airport
File:Norwich Airport Logo.jpg
Airport type Public
Owner Omniport (80.1%)
Norfolk County Council
Norwich City Council
Operator Norwich Airport Limited
Serves Norwich, Norfolk
Elevation AMSL 117 ft / 36 m
Coordinates 52°40′33″N 001°16′58″E / 52.67583°N 1.28278°E / 52.67583; 1.28278Coordinates: 52°40′33″N 001°16′58″E / 52.67583°N 1.28278°E / 52.67583; 1.28278
Website norwichairport.co.uk
EGSH is located in Norfolk
Location in Norfolk
Direction Length Surface
m ft
09/27 1,841 6,040 Asphalt/concrete
Statistics (2012)
Passengers 396,676
Passenger change 11-12 Decrease4.2%
Aircraft Movements 39,846
Movements change 11-12 Increase2.4%
Sources: UK AIP at NATS[1]
Statistics from the UK Civil Aviation Authority[2]

Norwich International Airport (IATA: NWI, ICAO: EGSH), also known as Norwich Airport, is an airport in the City of Norwich within Norfolk, England 2.8 NM (5.2 km; 3.2 mi) north of the city centre and on the edge of the city's suburbs at Hellesdon. As of 2012 Norwich airport is 30th busiest airport in the UK.[2]

Along with a long history of flights to Amsterdam Airport Schiphol via KLM Cityhopper (formerly KLM UK), it offers flights to various destinations in the United Kingdom and Europe. Besides the commercial flights, charter operators also operate out of Norwich. Bristow Helicopters, DanCopter and Bond Offshore Helicopters fly crews to North Sea gas rigs and SaxonAir operates executive, private aircraft and helicopter charter flights.

Norwich Airport has a CAA Public Use Aerodrome Licence (Number P723) that allows flights for the public transport of passengers or for flying instruction.

History[edit | edit source]

The first Norwich airport was set up on a former First World War aerodrome on Mousehold Heath under what is now the Heartsease housing estate. This fell into disuse in the early part of the Second World War.

RAF Horsham St Faith[edit | edit source]

The current site, formerly known as Royal Air Force Station Horsham St Faith, or more commonly RAF Horsham St Faith, was first developed in 1939 and officially opened on 1 June 1940 as a Royal Air Force (RAF) bomber station.

In September 1942 Horsham St. Faith was made available to the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) for use by the Eighth Air Force. The USAAF designated the airfield as Station 123 (HF).

The airfield was transferred to RAF Fighter Command on 10 July 1945 when it was occupied by four Gloster Meteor Squadrons. RAF Horsham St. Faith was a front-line RAF station for many years, and its squadrons participated in many post-war exercises. The station was deactivated on 1 August 1963.

Civil airport[edit | edit source]

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|date= }} The RAF left Horsham on 24 March 1967. Over the following two years the major part of the airfield and buildings were sold to Norwich City and Norfolk County Council, a small part being retained by the Ministry of Defence (MoD). Norwich Airport Ltd under ownership of the County and City Councils developed the modern day Norwich International Airport.

Most of the World War II buildings used by the USAAF remain, although converted for a variety of purposes. Three of the five large pre-war hangars are still being used for aircraft maintenance. Two have been converted for commercial use. The control tower still exists although the top has been restored and a new tower has been built adjacent to the present main runway. Other wartime buildings now form part of the airport industrial estate (owned by the County and City Councils) and are intermingled with many newer structures. Adjacent to the airport terminal building opened in 1988 there is a memorial display relating to the USAAF, consisting of photographs, paintings, and a plaque commemorating the American use of the airfield.

The former RAF accommodation blocks situated towards Old Catton were until 1993 used by the University of East Anglia as accommodation for students; known to students as "Fifers Lane" halls, these have since been demolished and the site redeveloped as housing. The remaining MoD property—airmen's married quarters—continued to be used for nearby RAF stations, but due to the closure of these stations, the housing has been sold to private buyers.

Whilst most runways and taxiways from the military airfield remain, only one runway is primarily used, to avoid takeoffs and landings over built-up areas: east–west runway 09/27, which was extended eastwards by the RAF in 1956. The old 04/22 runway is no longer used for takeoffs or landings, but is used for parking and taxiing of larger aircraft.

In March 2004, the City and County Councils sold 80.1% of Norwich Airport Ltd to Omniport[3] whilst retaining the remaining 19.9%. Omniport has also acquired 100% of Norwich Airport Travel Ltd. Since the sale to Omniport the airport has become one of the UK hubs for budget carrier Flybe and the number of flights and destinations served have rapidly increased. In 2005 a £3.5M terminal expansion programme began.

During filming of the BBC show Top Gear, operations from the airport appeared disrupted when a caravan, adapted into an airship and flown by James May, drifted overhead the airport, infringing its controlled airspace. In reality, the event occurred after much pre-planning between the airport authorities and the BBC; and scenes showing the airship in the airfield boundary were actually filmed after the blimp had lifted off from the airfield to satisfy the requirements of the film crew.[4]

In 2007, the airport introduced its Airport Development Fee (ADF). All passengers departing from the airport pay a fee of £10.[5]

Facilities[edit | edit source]

The airport has one runway (designated 09/27), 1,841 m (6,040 ft) in length. A smaller 1,285 m (4,216 ft) runway (designated 04/22) was closed in 2006, and is now used as a taxiway. The airport has nine parking stands for commercial aircraft.

Airlines and destinations[edit | edit source]

Control tower at Norwich International Airport.

Airlines Destinations 
Air Malta Seasonal: Malta
BH Air Seasonal: Bourgas
BMI Regional Aberdeen
Eastern Airways Aberdeen
Flybe Edinburgh
Seasonal: Jersey, Newquay
operated by Loganair
Seasonal: Guernsey
Freebird Airlines Seasonal: Dalaman [6]
Germania Seasonal: Corfu, Dalaman, Enfidha, Ibiza, Palma de Mallorca, Tenerife-South
operated by KLM Cityhopper
Nouvelair Seasonal: Enfidha
Thomas Cook Airlines Seasonal: Palma de Mallorca
Thomson Airways Seasonal: Corfu, Ibiza, Palma de Mallorca,[7] Tenerife-South

Based operators[edit | edit source]

Operators based at Norwich are Bond Helicopters,[8] Bristow Helicopters,[9] DanCopter,[10] NHV Helicopters,[11] Eastern Airways, Flybe, SaxonAir Charter & SaxonAir Flight Support and the East Anglian Air Ambulance,.[12]

Accidents and incidents[edit | edit source]

On 12 December 1973 a Dassault Falcon 20 of Fred. Olsen Airtransport suffered a bird strike on takeoff from runway 28. Both engines failed and the aircraft made an emergency landing in a field. All three crew members were injured, the passengers sustained no injuries. The aircraft was written off.[13]

On 25 October 1974 a Cessna 310 dived into the ground while on final approach, killing the pilot. The Cessna's nose pitched down and the wings rolled over; the loss of control was caused by the uncommanded retraction of the starboard flap, caused by the failure of the drive mechanism.[14]

Statistics[edit | edit source]

Busiest Routes to and from Norwich Airport (2012)[15]
Rank Airport Passengers handled % Change
2011 / 12
1  Netherlands – Amsterdam 123,709 Decrease1 KLM Cityhopper
2  United Kingdom – Aberdeen 64,630 Increase5 BMI Regional, Eastern Airways
3  United Kingdom – Edinburgh 39,663 Decrease15 Flybe
4  United Kingdom – Manchester 28,778 Increase9 Flybe
5  Spain – Palma de Mallorca 15,208 Increase6 Air Europa, Thomas Cook, Thomson
6  Greece – Corfu 9,013 Increase2 Thomson
7  Spain – Tenerife-South 8,778 Decrease1 Thomson, Orbest Orizonia
8  Turkey – Dalaman 8,523 Decrease19 Freebird, Thomas Cook
9  Spain – Ibiza 8,020 Increase6 Thomson
10  Malta – Malta 7,159 Increase11 Air Malta
11  United Kingdom – Exeter 7,080 nm
12  Turkey - Antalya 6,603 Decrease29 Thomas Cook
13  Bulgaria - Burgas 6,290 Increase70 BH Air
14  Jersey - Jersey 4,968 Increase1 Flybe
15  United Kingdom – Newquay 2,706 nm Flybe
16  United Kingdom – Humberside 1,804 Increase54
17  Guernsey - Guernsey 1,612 Increase4 Flybe
18  Portugal - Funchal de Madeira 1,213 Decrease16
19  Italy - Verona Villafranca 1,204 Decrease13
20  Isle of Man - Isle of Man 1,054 nm Flybe

Ground services[edit | edit source]

Bus[edit | edit source]

Norse operates a park and ride service a 2 minute walk from the airport direct to Norwich city centre on Monday – Saturday every 10 – 15 minutes.[16]

Road[edit | edit source]

Norwich airport is situated on the A140, which travels from Ipswich via Norwich to the seaside town of Cromer; this also provides easy road access to Norwich city centre.

Future Road Links: The Norwich Northern Distributor Road will link the airport to the A47, stopping people using the congested ring road, and providing faster and better connections to other parts of the county and country.

Rail[edit | edit source]

Norwich airport does not have a railway station; the nearest railway station is Norwich Railway Station approximately 4 miles (6.4 km) distant.

Taxi[edit | edit source]

Taxis are available directly outside the terminal building

Notes[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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