Cardiff Heliport is one of the UK’s best dedicated heliports, built two miles out of the centre of the city of Cardiff on a 13.5 acre purpose built facility that includes Passenger Handling, Customs, Engineering, Fuel and a 400m FATO Runway. However, it closed on 30th November 2014.
The Heliport has been run for many years by Veritair, although that company has gone through some ownership changes and is currently owned by Rigby Group plc through its Patriot Aerospace division and British Internaiotnal. Rigby, headed up by tech entrepreneur Sir Peter Rigby, also owns Regional and City Airport Management (RCAM) which owns and runs Exeter, Coventry and Derry Airports, along with a business park adjacent to Norwich Airport. RCAM also operated Blackpool Airport on behalf of owners Balfour Beatty (previously Rigby’s partners in RCAM before they acquired it 100%), although Balfour Beatty have recently all-but closed it down – it has reopened on a very low scale with significantly less traffic.
Earlier this year, when Rigby Group withdrew their own flying operations from Cardiff Heliport, they told us that they would be continuing operating the heliport in the long term, and had a contract with Cardiff City Council which required them to do so for a further 18 years until 2032.
Ian Lloyd-Davis of Cardiff City Council confirmed to HeliHub.com that the Heliport had closed and the Council are in “commercial discussions with an interested party” regarding the future operations of the Heliport. He also used the phrase “asset strip” with regards to the recent running of the heliport, but would not elaborate on that.
We also approached Judy Groves, Marketing Director of Rigby Group, who advised us “We can confirm that Cardiff Heliport is closed pending a review of the overall commercial operation of the Heliport with Cardiff City Council”
Jeremy Parkin – HeliHub.com
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