Based on the Gower Peninsula, Swansea Airfield is just 5 miles South West of the city. A recently updated restaurant, open from 09.00 to 17.30 and a choice of 2 x runways 22/04 and 10/28, makes this a good choice for flying somewhere a little different. This is a parachute drop area, so please call PPR. Taxis can arranged to take you to the city centre, where the National Waterfront Museum of Wales is based as well as the free Swansea Museum in the centre. If you feel energetic, you can have a go at learning to surf, at the Gower Surf School. The peninsula has many lovely beaches to walk along and the opportunity to find a pub for lunch. Radio is 119.700
Swansea Airport was built on what was originally common land during World War II. The aerodrome was declared operational on 15 June 1941 as RAF Fairwood Common, after taking nearly a year to develop. It was built as a day and night fighter station within 10 Group RAF Fighter Command. The aerodrome became a sector station in October 1941, taking on the responsibility for the air defence of South and West Wales including shipping in the Bristol and Saint George's Channels.
The aerodrome fulfilled a variety of military roles during World War II, with the addition of an Armament Practice Camp in October 1943 which expanded into an Armament Practice Station in July 1945 following which it went into 'care and maintenance' in October 1946. Finally decommissioned by the RAF in spring 1949, private flying started in July 1949 with the formation of Swansea Flying Club at the renamed Fairwood Common Airfield. The airfield hosted a number of air races and motor/motorcycle races but it was not until 1957 that Swansea Corporation allowed Cambrian Airways to run the airport for them on a commercial basis. Renamed Swansea Airport, it was officially opened on 1 June 1957 with Cambrian Airways inaugural flight arriving from Jersey. Then in the following 12 years, a variety of airlines operated through the airport with varying degrees of success. Cambrian Airways operated services to Jersey and Guernsey; and Morton Air Services operated a service to Gatwick. Scheduled regular flights then ceased in 1969. During the 1970s and 1980s, only ad hoc and summer charter flights continued to operate, mainly by Dan Air/Skyways.
The 1990s saw the arrival of Heli-air Wales to the airport, and so began the era of Helicopter Training in South Wales. In April 2000, Swansea entrepreneur Martin Morgan via his company Jaxx Landing Ltd., bought the remaining lease. Ambitious plans were put in place to upgrade the then run-down facilities. The airport changed ownership again in 2003, when the Morgan’s sold their interest in the airport to Swansea Airport Limited, owned by Air Wales owner and director Roy Thomas, who was appointed CEO of the airport company.
The airport was, for a short time, the headquarters of Air Wales before they ceased all operations from the airport to focus on more popular routes from Cardiff International Airport, although before their demise, the headquarters remained in Swansea, instead at a city-centre location.
Tel: 01792 208 182