Hey guys! Since London Gatwick is open for the next few hours with today’s Expert Server schedule, I just wanted to publicly clarify this.
You do not need clearance to cross or enter runway 26R/08L.
There is a TFR above the airport announcing that the runway is operational as a taxiway and closed as an active runway, so it has the exact same rules as any other taxiway. You can taxi on it, cross it, and hold behind another plane on it. In that same vein, you cannot use it to takeoff or land.
No big deal if you get confused - being on the safe side and requesting it is rarely a bad idea - however, in discussing with my fellow IFATC members, we agree that there is no extra clearance required and any request by a pilot should be sent a “Already cleared to cross” message as a response. This isn’t malicious or trying to make you feel bad or dumb that you may have forgot something, it’s just procedure. You will not be ghosted or reprimanded for entering the “runway” without specific permission.
I hope this helped at least some of you. :)
Happy flying all!