Scottish flight training academy Tayside Aviation Ltd has announced that it has taken over the leasehold of Fife Airport (Glenrothes), and embarked on a major refurbishment of the airfield and its facilities. Jim Watt, MD of Tayside Aviation Ltd, has invested considerable time and money transforming what was essentially an airstrip with a restaurant into an environment dedicated to pilots and aviation.
Fife is one of the most popular General Aviation airfields in Scotland, and the refurbishment should make it even better. Mr Watt intends to base four Tayside aircraft at Fife – three Warriors and a Cherokee, along with two full-time and two part-time instructors – allowing for seven-days-a week-coverage. There should be at least one full-time and one part- time instructor at the airfield at any one time. Currently there are eighteen privately owned aeroplanes resident at Fife, and there is room in the hangars for a few more. Pilot understands that efforts will be made to attract more residents. Skydive St Andrews will continue to be based at Fife and has a fleet of up to three aircraft – a Cessna 185, a Cessna 206 and a GippsAero GA-8 Airvan.
In addition to the resident aeroplanes, there are now seven helicopters based at Skyhook Helicopters and Kingdom Helicopters. They are housed in the hangars at the west end of the airfield, but will be sharing the new facilities at the Skyview Café. One event planned for when things get back to normal is a helicopter ride gift voucher day.
In the Skyview Café, there is a new cashless payment system and a good strong Wi-Fi signal everywhere – handy for getting online for flight planning. Two big screens will be installed showing alternating views of Flightradar and local weather.
The main restaurant area has been refloored, and there are?plenty of tables at the windows to allow visitors to sit and watch the aircraft while enjoying tea, coffee and snacks. The café menu and opening hours are still to be decided, with the range of food increasing as time goes by.
A new fuel pump has been installed which can be operated manually or via a ‘fob’ system – all owners of aircraft resident at Fife will receive an electronic fob that will allow them to fuel as and when they wish. The pump will be left on 24/7 (although normal flying curfew hours will still apply).
The Fife Flying Club reports it is looking forward to a grand opening which may be combined with its AGM.