3-Feb-2014 Source: HeliHub.com
From the 1st December 2015, the support of lighthouses around the coasts of UK and Ireland is to merge into one contract. Up to now there have been three separate contracts for the Corporation of Trinity House (covering England & Wales), Northern Lighthouse Board (Scotland) and the Commissioner of Irish Lights (Ireland and Northern Ireland).
Currently these are run by:-
– England and Wales – MD902 – Specialist Aviation Services
– Scotland – EC135 – Bond Air Services (part of Avincis Group)
– Ireland and Northern Ireland – EC135 – Irish Helicopters (which is owned by PDG Helicopters)
The new contract will run for seven years from 1st December 2015 to 30th Novmeber 2022, with a further three single year extensions which could take it to November 2025. Northern Lighthouse Board has been chosen as the lead.
The three authorities (known collectively as the “General Lighthouse Authorities of Great Britain and Ireland”) have placed a collaborative contract notice in the Supplement to the Official Journal of the European Union advertising the tender exercise for their future helicopter services requirements from 1 December 2015 onwards. The Service contract notice reference is 2014/S 008-009689 and can be found on Tenders Electronic Daily (TED) and NLB’s Buyer Profile The notice explains how to obtain tender documents and be involved in this exercise.
Whether the contract continues to be operated by three helicopters remains to be seen. That will be dependent on how each bidder views the tasks and distances that need to be covered. While many of the lighthouses are now automated, there is still a need to transport equipment and building/repair materials and personnel associated with that work.
Jeremy Parkin – HeliHub.com