BRITISH HELICOPTER ADVISORY BOARD
Notes of Special Events Autumn Review Meeting
Held at the Lasham Gliding Club, Lasham
On Thursday 9 November 2006
A list of attendees and apologies for absence received is attached to these notes.
The Chairman thanked James Ford, and also Alastair McKinnon, for the use of
the facilities at Lasham. James had arranged for the use of the meeting rooms
and for the provision of Coffee and Danish pastries prior to the meeting.
There were no issues arising from the Notes of the Spring Review Meeting in
2. Review of 2006 Events
2.1 Helicopter & Aviation Services Events:
The Chairman introduced Derek Morris to discuss Helicopter & Aviation
Cheltenham National Hunt
Movements were slightly down in comparison to 2005, and one reason for
this may have been the inaccurate weather forecasting. The new
arrangements for passengers were considered a great improvement and
no complaints were received this year. The popularity of the Open Meeting
at Cheltenham has increased and this may come under the heading of a
special event for 2007 with the usual landing fees and facilities.
Traffic was down by 13% this year. Although popular, it still remains a
small event since the Derby moved to the weekend.
15% increase in traffic on the last event at the racecourse but 30%
reduction in comparison to 2005 when Royal Ascot was moved to York.
The event was successful with smooth operations and no complaints had
been received. However next year, with all the substantial changes to the
Air Traffic regime/London Zone all the procedures for Royal Ascot and the
Diamond Meeting will have to be rewritten. It is therefore essential that all
those planning to attend these events are present at the mandatory Pilots
Briefing that follows the BHAB Spring Review Meeting in March.
Continues to be a small event with fuel on site. The transport system
cannot be improved because of the actual layout of the event. The same
facilities will be available next year.
The heliport will continue to operate to minimum requirements. Although
the boat clubs require the heliport, the facilities are not used to any extent.
There were no problems at the St Leger, held at York for 2006 only, but the
numbers were not substantial. The heliport for the Ebor Festival at York will
be operated by Helicopter and Aviation Services. Ad hocs are available at
York as well as the other racecourses operated by HASL (Epsom being
available on race days only).
Derek advised that HASL now manage the helicopter landing sites at Milton
As Derek had mentioned forthcoming changes to the ATC environment, the
Chairman then introduced Keith Miller, Thames Radar and SVFR Controller,
NATS, LTCC who provided the following briefing, stating that most of these are
tentative proposals at the moment and subject to the approval of DAP:
Royal Ascot and Diamond Meetings
The London CTR to the West and South of Ascot will be disestablished and will
become Class G airspace, upper limit probably 1200ft (to be confirmed). A TRA
will be established to protect the event.
Temporary routes H8 and H11 will be removed, and the Manor and Bagshot
freelanes will no longer be necessary since the airspace will become Class G.
Inbound route to Ascot via Battersea will be H3 - H6 – THORPE – ASCOT.
Outbound route from Ascot to Battersea - leave to the South then enter the
London CTR via H7.
Epsom Derby Meeting
No special procedures for 2007 are envisaged due to insufficient helicopter
traffic. Should there be an upsurge in bookings, then we will reconsider the
Proposed Airspace/Routeing Changes
1. London CTR to become Class C airspace – VFR allowed.
2. Due to the change in Rule 5, (1000ft Rule) helicopters will be cleared not
above 1500ft, rather than at 1500ft in the 020° to 140º sector of the London
CTR. It is the pilots’ responsibility to avoid R157.
3. H10 to be changed to route via Wormwood Scrubs and deconflicted from
Heathrow Northbound departures from 09R/09L.
4. A new VRP to be established North of Battersea at the boundary of their ATZ.
5. H4 to route from LCY CTA boundary via the A2 trunk road to the Isle of Dogs,
then direct to London Bridge.
6. A new VRP to be established North of LCY in the Beckton area to facilitate
Item Number 2 will be introduced imminently. Some of the other items may need
public consultation before their introduction.
In response to a question as to whether rumours in relation to stopping helicopter
traffic crossing Heathrow were true, Keith said he had not heard anything on this
Matt Lee, Airspace Utilisation Section, and Barry Jacques replacement at DAP,
then took the opportunity to advise those present that TRAs are now to become
RA(T)s - Reserved Airspace (Temporary).
2.2 Silverstone British Grand Prix 2006
David Ward said that total movements on Sunday for the Silverstone
Grand Prix were 1081 and this represents approximately a quarter of the
numbers experienced in the late 90s. The Northern Heliport (allocated a
flow rate of 25 movements per 15 minutes) logged 416 and the Southern
Heliport (allocated a flow rate of 44 movements per 15 minutes) logged
665. There were no holds this year due to the light traffic. Potential
problems due to the reduced amount of time available to inbound shuttles
because of the earlier start of the race had been negated by the decision to
revert to use of the Northern FATO following its proposed withdrawal to
solely Southern FATO operations. However, there will be no operations on
the Southern heliport for 2007 and it is planned to revert to the later race
start time. In spite of the declining movements over the past few years,
interest for 2007 appears to be better than 2006 at this stage.
2.3 St Andrews British Open Golf
This site was operated by Helimates (UK) on behalf of Heli-Charter and
Alan Mates reported on this event. Alan said that they had successfully
allayed the original reservations concerning noise for the operation of the
heliport at Hoylake, receiving only one complaint during the event. The
numbers were slightly down on last year, averaging appx 100 per day.
The Heliport operated to H2 standards, unlicensed Air to Ground service.
Alan then thanked Bob Downs, Event Direct Aviation Services, for his
assistance in providing the excellent approach plates.
2.4 Aintree Grand National
Philip Pickford, RotaryWing, was unable to attend this meeting but had
forwarded the following report:
The Grand National 2006 went extremely well because of the mild weather.
Movements were up on 2005 with a 60% rise in helicopter shuttles. For
2007 the helicopter landing area and parking will be the same as 2005
(fairway on the southern side of the course). The pilots’ rest
area/accommodation has always been very basic due to the allocation of
space. However, it has been advised that this will be rectified for 2007 with
a larger unit and more facilities i.e. computer access/free phone lines. The
supply of Jet a-1 has always been a logistical problem and fuel will be
allocated on a “first come first served” basis as in previous years.
2.5 Farnborough 06
Sharon Douglas, Elite Helicopter and Aviation Services, advised that the
heliport at Farnborough operated smoothly this year in spite of the reduced
area. Movements were in line with previous years. The only problem was
the intense heat and the portakabin in the passenger area was very hot.
2.6 Goodwood Festival of Speed & Revival Meetings.
Mike Husband of Goodwood Aerodrome was unable to attend the meeting
but sent the following information to the BHAB office:
All of the Goodwood events were successful in both the public attendance
and the aviation activities (all pilots conformed). Future dates of next
year’s events are:
Festival of Speed: 22, 23 and 24 June
Glorious Goodwood Week: 31 July - 4 August
Revival Meeting: 31 August - 2 September
2.7 Ryder Cup, Kildare
As there was no-one present to speak of the event, the Chairman asked if
anyone had anything to report. It appears that the event went well.
2.8 Wales GB Rally; 1 - 3 December 2006
Jeremy James said that, to date, only 8/9 helicopters had booked for the
event so it is not anticipated to be to the same scale as last year.
3. Prospects for 2007
The Chairman said that he was unhappy with the last BHAB Spring Briefing Meeting.
Some heliport operators simply advised that facilities would be “the same as last
year”. In consideration of any pilots new to the event, unless a mandatory briefing is
to take place, heliport operators must provide concise details and full information.
3.1 Silverstone Grand Prix
James Ford, Silverstone Heliports, confirmed that only the Northern Heliport will
be in operation with 12 Gates and 3 Terminals. Gemini parking would be the
same with available parking either side of the runway. Fuel would be available at
the southern end of the runway. Transport for pilots would be provided and it is
anticipated that transport for passengers would involve a much shorter distance.
Further information will be available at the Spring Briefing Meeting and the
mandatory Pilots’ Briefing.
3.2 Helitech 2007.
The dates for Helitech are 2,3 and 4 October at Duxford. Details will be available
at the Spring Briefing Meeting.
3.3. Ebor Festival at York.
Derek Morris advised that Royal Ascot at York had been such a successful event
that Helicopter and Aviation Services were operating the landing site in the centre
of the racecourse for the Ebor Festival and ad hoc landings. He hoped that the
industry would promote this facility. The Racecourse is popular with excellent
grandstands. HASL have revamped their website and documents and
information is available on www.helipad.co.uk. Landing site details are expanding
on the website and members of BHAB are welcome to add their own.
New HASL conditions and instructions were available from Angela Goldsmith at
the end of the meeting for collection on signature. Derek advised once again that
wanton abuse of the booking system for events would incur penalties.
3.4. Doncaster St Leger
Philip Pickford’s email to the BHAB advised:
“After operating the Heliport at Doncaster Racecourse for several years,
RotaryWing are looking forward to its return after the 2006 visit to York. We are
currently in talks with Arena Leisure and Doncaster Council and will update BHAB
members at the meeting in March.”
3.5 Centenary of First Helicopter Flight
The Chairman said there was some dispute as to whether the French may lay
claim to the first helicopter flight one hundred years ago since there was no
evidence that it had actually lifted off the ground. However, the RAeS are
planning to celebrate the anniversary with events in Weston-Super-Mare, RAF
Halton and talks/lectures in London with a 3 day conference.
3.6 Open Golf – Carnoustie
The dates for this event are 19 – 22 July. The event was last held in Carnoustie 7
years ago but Alan Mates advised that arrangements were already in hand and
ground transport would be provided to the Golf Course. Further information will
be available at the meeting in March.
4. Any other business
4.1 Special Events – Weston Aviation The London Heliport.
John Rowley, SATCO at The London Heliport, said that arrangements at
Battersea went well for special events and slots worked for the main part.
However, Farnborough created some problems with the late booking of slots-
many of which turned out to be “ghost” bookings. This led to some operators
being turned away when, in fact, they could have been accommodated. Next
year penalties will be incurred for late cancellation of slots.
Following the London Assembly Investigation into Helicopter Noise, Battersea
Heliport is introducing a new policy for 2007 whereby helicopters can only start up
when all passengers are aboard. It will now not be possible to anticipate the
arrival of passengers and proceed to start up. The Weston Heliport movements
are close to the permitted limit for 2006 and cutbacks are anticipated. In answer
to a question as to whether landing fees, increased primarily to effectively reduce
movements, would suffer a further increase, John said he would raise the subject
In future, aircraft without rotor brakes will not be permitted during special events.
4.2 Progress of BHAB Special Events Heliports Working Group
The Chairman advised that the purpose of this group was to provide a document
on “gold standard heliport management” defining the level of standards. The
paper was nearly ready for CAA agreement before becoming official guidelines.
4.3 Tour de France – UK
The BHAB have been advised that any enquiries for the UK part of the Tour de
France should be made to Gae Pellet, Geko Services, who has been appointed
as Aviation Consultant. More details will be available in March.
5. Date of next meeting
The Spring Review meeting will take place on WEDNESDAY 7 March 2007 at
1030hrs and will be followed by the Cheltenham Pilots’ briefing. The Venue is the
Aviators Hotel, Sywell, courtesy of Helicopter & Aviation Services.