Introduction

The aviation sector in Luton comprises of three distinct types of activities - London Luton Airport and related ground-based infrastructure, airlines and aerospace manufacturing businesses.

Luton has a great track record when it comes to attracting high-quality airlines (transporting people and freight), ground-based infrastructure businesses and multinational aerospace manufacturing firms and their supply chain.

The current expansion of London Luton Airport combined with the new Enterprise Zone will see this sector really take off in Luton over the next few years.

For more information on the London Luton Airport development click here.

London Luton Airport offers flights to over 100 destinations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, including the key business centres of Amsterdam, Berlin, Cologne, Dublin, Frankfurt, Geneva, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Turin and Warsaw.

Easily accessed from London, the airport is ideally located for inward investors and business travellers make up 19 per cent of passengers. Ryanair, easyJet, Monarch and Thomson all have bases at London Luton Airport. The airport offers passengers an extensive choice of both scheduled and charter services including Wizz Air, EL AL and Thomson Airways.

Alongside are significant aircraft engineering operations, while regular cargo flights to major European hubs are operated courtesy of major freight carriers including DHL, Monarch Scheduled and MNG.

The airport’s proximity to London has further led to a rapid growth in private jet activity in recent years.

The government’s white paper on the future of air transport gives London Luton Airport a prominent place in the provision of air services in the South-East in the period to 2050.

KEY BUSINESSES IN SECTOR

Companies like to locate where there is already a history of successful investment. Luton has a great track record when it comes to attracting high-quality businesses, with many operating internationally. This includes large multi-national companies who have chosen Luton for their UK or European headquarters, and many are high-profile names.

easyJet (UK) plc founded in 1995 and set up its HQ in Luton. The airline operates more than 600 routes across 30 countries with a fleet in excess of 200 Airbus aircraft. The company has around 8,000 employees, including 2,000 pilots and 4,500 cabin crew.

Monarch Aircraft Engineering Ltd has been part of the company’s headquarters based at London Luton Airport since 1967. With an additional facility at Manchester Airport, it provides maintenance, line maintenance, engineering, technical support and aircraft engine services.

GKN Aerospace Transparency Systems (Luton) Ltd is the technical and development centre where the company undertakes the manufacture of military canopies, and specialises in aircraft    de-icing protection and cockpit lighting.

Moog started as a designer and supplier of aircraft and missile components more than 50 years ago. At its Luton base Moog manufactures a broad range of navigation products for civil, military and marine applications. Products include Tactical Air Navigation (TACAN), Distance Measuring Equipment (DME) and Direction Finding (DF). The company employs a highly-talented workforce and is able to offer customers a broad range of options to meet their unique needs, all backed by world-class customer support.

Selex ES at Luton hosts the Air & Naval Electronic Warfare System, Strategic System, Eurofighter Defence Aids Systems, ISTAR Intelligence, Surveillance and Target Systems. The Luton site is the European Centre of Excellence for Electronic Warfare.

Signature Flight Support fixed based operation at London Luton Airport has been consistently voted the best in Europe by the readers of Professional Pilot magazine. The facility’s one-stop, full-service capacity has ensured that it remains one of the busiest fixed based operations outside of the USA, with more than 13,000 air traffic movements annually. Signature London Luton features dedicated de-icing equipment and personnel for the convenience of its customers.

Harrods Aviation is the leading London-based business aviation service provider which offers high quality fixed based operations at London Luton Airport. The Luton facility accommodates arrivals and departures 24 hours a day. Facilities includes a fully-equipped hangar and full aircraft servicing and maintenance work at all levels, from compulsory inspections right up to major repairs.

Gulfstream Aerospace Ltd facility at London Luton Airport is the first Gulfstream-owned service centre outside the United States, and serves as Gulfstream’s European maintenance hub. The facility features a hangar, offices and warehouse and is staffed by more than 185 employees who serve the highest volume of transient Gulfstream traffic in Europe. The new modern office and hangar facilities compliment a 10,000 sq ft parts warehouse which can ship to any location within 24 hours.

Cranfield Aviation Training School (CATS) was formed in 2002 and is a provider of theoretical knowledge training for student airline pilots. With its headquarters in Luton and partners throughout the world, it is one of the leading organisations in its field.
Landmark Aviation’s current network includes operations in the USA as well in Europe and Canada. Its fixed based operation in London Luton Airport offers exceptional facilities with customer service and uncompromising safety standards. Services include ground handling, customs and immigration clearance (on-field), pilot supplies, aircraft detailing and VIP services.

Frank Brown & Son Ltd design and manufacture ground support maintenance equipment and tooling for the aerospace, aircraft industry and airlines throughout the world. They specialise in tooling and jig making and their highly skilled workforce are experienced practitioners of product design, tool making, universal milling, turning, CNC machining, welding, paint spraying, packaging and general engineering. Frank Brown & Son design and manufacture to customer specifications and have secured precision fabrication contracts for (among others) Rolls Royce, British Aerospace and British Airways. The company also designs and manufactures automotive parts for conveying systems, press tools and lifting equipment.