Airport & Aerospace
Aerospace and Airport
London Luton Airport is one of the UK’s largest airports, now carrying upwards of nine million passengers per year. A major driver for the regional economy, it employs around 8,500 people and is the largest private sector employer in Luton. London Luton Airport offers flights to 90 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. easyJet, Ryanair, Monarch and Thomson all have bases at London Luton. Wizz Air, El Al, Blue Air, Aer Arann, Flybe and a number of charter airlines also fly from the airport. Alongside are significant aircraft engineering operations, while regular cargo flights to major European hubs are operated courtesy of major freight carriers like DHL and MNG. The airport’s proximity to London has led to a rapid growth in private jet activity in recent years; this now makes up 20 per cent of aircraft movements, and the specialist companies located at London Luton have made it the busiest private jet airport in the UK. 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 around the airport
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 was founded in 1995 and set up its HQ in Luton. The airline now has 192 aircraft and flies to 29 countries via 525 routes. The company has 7,300 employees including 1,900 pilots and 4,300 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 icing protection and cockpit lighting. The site at Luton employs 301 staff.
TUI Travel plc is the world’s leading travel company, operating in over 180 countries and serving more than 30 million customers. Tui Travel plc employs around 700 people at its headquarters in Luton and 49,000 worldwide.
Fernau Avionics is a leading supplier of ground-based navigation aids for military, naval and civil aviation.
Selex Galileo at Luton hosts the Air and 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 and employs approximately 1,000 staff.
Signature Flight’s 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.
Harrods Aviation is the leading London-based business aviation service provider which offers high-quality fixed based operations at London Luton Airport. In 1994 a new fixed based operation was formed at London Luton Airport, and it now has a fully-equipped hangar for aircraft maintenance and engineering at the site.
Gulfstream Aerospace Ltd is the first and only Gulfstream-owned service centre to be operated outside the United States. Employing 100 people at the Luton base, the company has provided a comprehensive service for Gulfstream aircraft since April 2003.
Aviance UK is an aircraft ground handling agent operating from 15 airports in the UK. Aviance divides operations into several service lines, mainly ground handling, cargo, lounges, airport agencies and central de-icing. The company serves 112 airports and has over 21,700 employees worldwide.
Frank Brown & Son (Luton) Ltd designs and manufactures ground support maintenance equipment and tooling for the aerospace and aircraft industry and airlines throughout the world.
Storm Aviation, headquartered at Capability Green in Luton, is a leading international provider of engineering services to the aviation industry. The company provides line maintenance for many aircraft types at 16 European locations, engineering training and contract manpower services.
Alpha Flight Services provides in-flight catering and in-flight retail operation.