News story: RAF Northolt runway closes as planned for resurfacing

#2
Runway resurfacing; the almost 'gold standard' combat indicator of imminent base closure.
 
#3
Runway resurfacing; the almost 'gold standard' combat indicator of imminent base closure.
I remember about a year ago the London Borough of Ealing waxing lyrical about the development opportunities that would be available if RAF Northolt was sold off. Quite what it had to do with them, when the site lies entirely within the London Borough of Hillingdon, I do not know.

From a MoD point of view, the site would certainly be worth a tidy fortune, but there is a fair bit of infrastructure and personnel that was moved there from RAF Uxbridge, RAF West Drayton, Inglis Barracks etc., for which they would have to find alternative sites.

The actual runway is rarely bothered by service aircraft, the bulk of movements being private commercial and VIP. I don't really know to what degree the income generated from this source covers the upkeep of the base.
 
#4
Northolt is a proper cash-cow in terms of the landing fees generated by biz jets. So much so that the Station was taken to court by Oxford Kidlington and Biggin Hill a couple of years ago for loss of income. They lost. There is a queue a mile long for the available operating slots. A few years ago, a mover mate of mine was getting earache from some jumped-up pop star about some trivia or other that had minimally inconvenienced him getting on his private jet. He was threatening to make sure the operator never used Northolt again. The look on the aircraft captain's face was ashen as he appreciated the impact on his employer.
 
#5
Net Jets used to fly from Northolt as it was easily accessible to London.
However having Lightnings fully armed up and facing the Net Jet hanger during the olympics was worrying.
1 wrong button by the fly boys and woof out goes a £4 million cost jet.

As said in previous post RAF Northolt is a great money spinner for the MoD.
Surely they are not that stupid to sell it off, or are they???8O
 
#6
Net Jets used to fly from Northolt as it was easily accessible to London.
However having Lightnings fully armed up and facing the Net Jet hanger during the olympics was worrying.
1 wrong button by the fly boys and woof out goes a £4 million cost jet.

As said in previous post RAF Northolt is a great money spinner for the MoD.
Surely they are not that stupid to sell it off, or are they???8O
The EE Lightning is certainly old, but wasn't into RAF service until 10 years after the 1948 London Olympics. Perchance you meant Typhoon, and not the one made by Hawkers!;)
 
#7
The EE Lightning is certainly old, but wasn't into RAF service until 10 years after the 1948 London Olympics. Perchance you meant Typhoon, and not the one made by Hawkers!;)
I think he meant the F35 but made the cardinal sin of anticipating the word of command and subsequent drill movement!

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#9
Pretty sure that the F35 wasn't in service with the RAF in 2012!
I know - but I think he's got his Typhoons and his Lightnings in a mucking fuddle!
 
#11
Runway resurfacing; the almost 'gold standard' combat indicator of imminent base closure.
Not really. When they give the juniors decent accommodation is more of a clear indicator.
 
#12
It's always been a strange place. Many years ago it was the home operations base for BEA. The BEA headquarters building (Bealine House) was across the road. It remained as British Airways pension HQ for many years after flying operations had moved to LHR.
 
#13
Northolt is a proper cash-cow in terms of the landing fees generated by biz jets. So much so that the Station was taken to court by LONDON Oxford INTERNATIONAL and LONDON Biggin Hill a couple of years ago for loss of income. They lost. There is a queue a mile long for the available operating slots. A few years ago, a mover mate of mine was getting earache from some jumped-up pop star about some trivia or other that had minimally inconvenienced him getting on his private jet. He was threatening to make sure the operator never used Northolt again. The look on the aircraft captain's face was ashen as he appreciated the impact on his employer.
Cough!
 
#16
Why would they resurface it if they are about to sell it?
For the same reason they refurbish kitchens or accommodation, then close. It's a left hand, right hand thing with MoD. Left hand makes plans for repairs and improvements, submits a budget and eventually receive approval for some (or all) of the work. Then it goes out to tender, then the work is planned and the mountains carry on getting worn down to sand. Right hand is doing other work on making our Forces lean and fit (pared back to the bone) and decides that they need to close a base but they don't consult anyone else. Left hand reads about closure in the paper and goes WTF?!
 
#17
For the same reason they refurbish kitchens or accommodation, then close. It's a left hand, right hand thing with MoD. Left hand makes plans for repairs and improvements, submits a budget and eventually receive approval for some (or all) of the work. Then it goes out to tender, then the work is planned and the mountains carry on getting worn down to sand. Right hand is doing other work on making our Forces lean and fit (pared back to the bone) and decides that they need to close a base but they don't consult anyone else. Left hand reads about closure in the paper and goes WTF?!
Yeah, it's a disappointing approach to running a country. I think Northolt is safe to be honest. If they sell it then the politicians and Royals will have to go all the way to Brize or worse, Heathrow with the commoners.

With it's commercial users paying for the upkeep and us already have shut down everything else around the south east and moving it to Northolt, there are not many places left to shutdown before we find ourselves with nothing.

Ironically, the MOD did more to keep Britain green than the civilian authorities ever did. As soon as these sites get sold then become housing estates or brownfield industrial estates. When they were in service they were large open spaces, green and relatively nice.
 
#18
Sometimes it does not even take that long! I did a G4 job in the last century and as my two years were coming to an end I would up arranging the demolishing of two builds that had been most important at the start of my tour.
 

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