Freight Haul at East Midlands
East Midlands Airport is the UK’s busiest pure cargo airport and second only to Heathrow, handling over 320,000 tonnes of flown cargo every year. We are the UK hub for DHL and UPS, and support operations for TNT and Royal Mail.
East Midlands Airport
East Midlands Airport (IATA: EMA, ICAO: EGNX) is an international airport in the East Midlands of England, located in Leicestershire close to Castle Donington. It lies between the cities of Derby, Nottingham and Leicester.
EMA has a CAA Public Use Aerodrome Licence (Number P520) that allows flights for the public transport of passengers or for flying instruction. East Midlands Airport has established itself as a hub for low fare airlines such as Jet2.com and Ryanair and tour operators like Thomson Airways which serve a range of domestic and European short-haul destinations. It is also a base for BMI Regional, Flybe, and Thomas Cook Airlines. Passenger numbers peaked in 2008 at 5.6 million, but had declined to around 4.5 million in 2015 making it the 11th busiest airport in the UK by passenger traffic. A major air cargo hub, it was the second busiest UK airport for freight traffic in 2016 after London Heathrow.
The airport is owned by the Manchester Airports Group (MAG), the largest British-owned airport operator which is controlled by the ten metropolitan boroughs of Greater Manchester with Manchester retaining the controlling stake.
The airport was originally a Royal Air Force station, RAF Castle Donington, which was decommissioned in 1946. The site was purchased by a consortium of local government authorities in 1964, when a major programme of building work and runway investment was begun. The airfield was renamed East Midlands Airport to reflect the area it served, and it opened for passengers in April 1965.
Until 1982, when the head office moved to Donington Hall, British Midland had its head office on the airport property. BMI also had its maintenance base at the airport.
Go Fly established a hub at East Midlands, and the operation has been strengthened since the airline’s absorption by easyJet. The majority of BMI operations were ceded to a new low cost subsidiary, bmibaby, in 2002.
A major development towards the long-haul programme came in 2005 with the introduction of holiday flights to the Dominican Republic, Orlando, and Cancún by First Choice Airways. Following increasing overcrowding at the terminal building, the airport facilities have been extended and remodelled. There are new short-stay car parks, but there are charges for drop-off outside the terminals. The arrivals hall has been extended, a new transport interchange has been created, and a new pier has been built to reduce ‘across tarmac’ walking to aircraft.
EasyJet ceased operating from the airport on 5 January 2010. However, it was announced on 13 April 2011 that Bmibaby would close its Manchester and Cardiff bases, moving an additional service to East Midlands Airport with increased frequencies and new routes for summer 2012. It was announced only just over a year later, on 3 May 2012, that Bmibaby would be closed down and cease all operations in September 2012 with a number of services being dropped from June. The parent company, International Airlines Group, cited heavy losses and the failure to find a suitable buyer as the reasons for the decision.
IIn light of the announcement, Flybe and Monarch Airlines announced they would establish a base at the airport, and low-cost airline Jet2.com confirmed they would also expand their operations from the airport with new routes and an additional aircraft from Summer 2013. Monarch Airlines shut down its base at East Midlands as well by spring 2015. Ryanair expanded its East Midlands base with a series of new routes and frequency increases on existing routes. They now serve the airport with 7 based aircraft, 40 destinations, over 320 weekly flights and roughly 2.3 million passengers a year, making it the largest airline at the airport, accounting for about 50% of passenger traffic with East Midlands now being Ryanair’s third largest UK airport after London-Stansted and Manchester, both now also owned by MAG.
In 2016 Heathrow handled 1.54 million tonnes of freight & mail compared with 300,100 tonnes at East Midlands. DHL Aviation have a large purpose-built facility at EMA, and courier companies United Parcel Service (UPS) and TNT also use the airport as a base to import/export freight to Belfast and Liege. Since July 2013, Thomson Airways operates with their Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft out of East Midlands, serving the long haul holiday destinations of Sanford (Orlando) and Cancun. There are also return flights to Jamaica and Bridgetown-Bardbados, operated once each year to join cruises and holidays.
Departing from EGLL, set the aircraft weight to MTOW for takeoff and land at EGNX with MLW.
I am hoping that we will be joined also by some fantastic budding IFATC controllers who will add that realistic feel to them ‘heavy’ skies.
Can you takeoff and land safely while flying a heavier aircraft?
NO PATTERN WORK AT FIELDS WITH ACTIVE ATC!
(Pattern work at controller’s discretion based on airport traffic conditions)
Follow all ATC instructions (when available).