London - ATC at its best!

Just a tiny example of what’s going on over London at the moment…


“Do a left 360 for spacing”

More like “do five 360’s for spacing”


Now thats a holding pattern.


Imagine that on the playground😂

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I don’t even want to think of it…

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If I am ATC on the Playground, I am happy if the pilots do a 360 and follow this introduction. But 5 360’s are too much and the most if the pilots would not listen.

add: low cost airlines can get in trouble if they have not enough fuel.

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ryanair cough cough valencia cough cough


When I flew into London once at seven am, even then they sent the planes on a carousel while waiting to land. They only have two runways there, it’s not like JFK with four.

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This is awesome as they have to space out arrivals more than usual as the visibility is so low!!

This is called ‘stacking’- they do it at London all the time. They have 4 locations where they do it- I believe they are at the VORs (Ockham, Lambourne, Biggin Hill, Bovva) that all aircraft approaching come into using a STAR. Heathrow Approach directs traffic into these, then Heathrow Intermediate take aircraft from these stacks into the ILS, then they are transferred onto Heathrow Tower. UK ATC some some of the most fascinated in the world.

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Yep! As it 360s it will slowly lose altitude, until there is enough space to land.