London’s most glamorous business airport you never knew existed


Ambitious expansion, film roles and cutting-edge apps are the talk at this London airport. Guess which one…

London and Europe’s most glamorous business airport is expanding. It’s getting another hangar and it’s even launching its own app. But I’m not talking about Heathrow, I’m not talking about Gatwick and, no, I’m not even talking about Stanstead.

I’m talking about Farnborough. Well, TAG Farnborough Airport, to give it its full title. Nestling rather inconspicuously in the Hampshire countryside, 22 miles from central London, this private charter-only airfield is developing fast.

Having starred in The Quantum Of Solace (as an Austrian airport used by Bond) and Inception, the airport is in talks with film studios about using the striking site as a location for future films.

But you could never accuse the airport of shirking its true occupation: it has been given permission to almost double its aircraft traffic by 2019.

TAG Farnborough has announced the construction of a second 120,000 sq ft hangar just in time for the Olympics. It has also announced the launch of an app (to be used by pilots, crew and passengers).

Often touted as the home of British aviation, flying began at the airfield in 1908 following the creation of His Majesty’s Balloon Factory (renamed Royal Aircraft Factory four years later).

How come we’ve never heard of it? Well, if you happen to own a private jet, you probably have. The airport welcomes around 28,000 private aircraft each year, and this figure is poised to skyrocket thanks to government approval.

Farnborough already plays host to one of the most fantastically futuristic terminals, while the new hangar will accentuate its design. The existing building looks part Bilbao Guggenheim, part Tracy Island, and is inspired by the shape of a propeller. Its shimmering surface looks like it would light up the greyest of English afternoons.

TAG Farnborough Airport chief executive officer Brandon O’Reilly said: “The new hangar will further enhance the airport’s dedicated business aviation product offering and give our customers greater choice and flexibility.

“The new building complements the existing hangar and terminal and underpins the success of TAG Farnborough Airport as Europe’s leading business aviation facility. I am pleased that these new hangars will be in place before the 2012 London Olympics.”

With the biennial airshow also on the way, so are we.