General Aviation

Published on April 16th, 2016 | by Mark Dwyer


New Airspace Classification for Belfast

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has given the go-ahead for the reclassification of the airspace over Belfast. The change, which comes into effect from 26 May 2016, will see all airspace within the Belfast Terminal Manoeuvring Area (TMA) change from a mix of Class E and D controlled airspace to solely Class D.

The newly simplified classification won’t affect commercial air traffic in and out of Belfast City or Belfast International airports, but will help ensure radio equipped private aircraft can still enter the airspace following permission from air traffic control. Non-radio equipped aircraft will still be able to access parts of the area under coordinated arrangements.

Michael Cockcroft, NATS General Manager at Belfast International Airport, said “With two busy airports in Belfast, we wanted to strike the best balance between the commercial passenger operation, while at the same time maintaining access for the General Aviation community. We think this change delivers that and we’re delighted the CAA has approved it.”

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About the Author

Mark is an airline pilot flying the Boeing 737 for a major European airline. In addition he is also a Type Rating Instructor, Type Rating Examiner and Base Training Captain on the B737. Outside of commercial flying Mark enjoys flying light aircraft from the smallest 3 Axis microlights up to heavier singles. He is also an instructor and EASA Examiner on single engines and a UK CAA Examiner. He flies the Chipmunk for the Irish Historic Flight Foundation (IHFF). Mark became the Chairman of the National Microlight Association of Ireland (NMAI) in 2013 and has overseen a massive growth in the organisation. In this role he has worked at local and national levels. In 2015, Mark won ‘Upcoming Aviation Professional Award’ at the Aviation Industry Awards sponsored by the IAA. Mark launched this website back in 2002 while always managing the website, he has also been Editor and Deputy Editor of FlyingInIreland Magazine from 2005 to 2015.

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