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Sywell Aerodrome

Sywell Aerodrome

Welcome to Sywell Aerodrome, a local aviation hub located in the scenic countryside of Northamptonshire. Serving the communities of Northampton, Wellingborough, Kettering, and Rushden, Sywell Aerodrome is a destination for aviation enthusiasts, training pilots, and corporate travelers. With a rich history and a wide range of facilities, it offers an exciting experience for visitors of all kinds.

Key Takeaways:

  • Sywell Aerodrome is a local aerodrome in Northamptonshire, serving the surrounding communities.
  • It offers private flying, flight training, and corporate flight services.
  • The aerodrome is home to aviation-related industries, businesses, and a range of facilities.
  • Sywell Aerodrome hosts various aviation events throughout the year.
  • It is known for its rich aviation history and the preservation of its heritage.

Location and Facilities

Sywell Aerodrome is conveniently located just 5 nautical miles northeast of Northampton, on the edge of the picturesque village of Sywell in Northamptonshire. Situated in the heart of the countryside, the aerodrome offers a tranquil setting for aviation enthusiasts and visitors alike.

The aerodrome boasts an impressive array of facilities to cater to the needs of pilots and aviation enthusiasts. With its CAA Ordinary Licence, it is authorized for public transport of passengers and flying instruction. Sywell Aerodrome features three operational runways, all-grass and all-weather concrete, providing flexibility for different types of aircraft operations. The operational hours are 0900–1700 during winter and 0800-1700 during summer, ensuring ample time for flying activities.

As a pilot-friendly aerodrome, Sywell provides an Aerodrome Flight Information Service (AFIS) to pilots, ensuring a safe and efficient operational environment. The AFIS offers valuable information and support, enhancing the overall flying experience for pilots.

Aerodrome Facilities Location
Operational Runways All-grass and all-weather concrete
Operational Hours 0900–1700 (Winter)
0800-1700 (Summer)
Aerodrome Flight Information Service (AFIS) Provided for pilots

Sywell Aerodrome’s prime location and well-equipped facilities make it an ideal destination for aviation enthusiasts, flight training, and corporate flights. Whether you’re looking to take to the skies or simply enjoy the thrill of watching aircraft in action, Sywell Aerodrome offers a unique and unforgettable aviation experience.

Aviation Training

At Sywell Aerodrome, we are committed to providing exceptional aviation training for aspiring pilots. Whether you’re looking to obtain your private pilot’s license, night rating, or IMC rating, our experienced instructors and state-of-the-art facilities are here to support your journey.

Our fixed-wing flying school offers comprehensive flight training programs tailored to your individual goals and skill level. From ground instruction to hands-on flight experience, we provide the knowledge and guidance necessary to develop your flying skills with confidence.

Once you’ve obtained your pilot’s license, we also offer aircraft hire services, allowing you to continue honing your skills and exploring the freedom of the skies. Our well-maintained fleet of aircraft is available for qualified pilots, providing opportunities for solo flights, cross-country adventures, and unforgettable aviation experiences.

Flight Training Programs Aircraft Hire
  • Private Pilot’s License
  • Night Rating
  • IMC Rating
  • Qualified Pilots
  • Solo Flights
  • Cross-Country Adventures

Experienced Instructors

Our flight instructors are highly experienced and dedicated professionals who are passionate about aviation. They provide personalized instruction, ensuring that each student receives the attention and guidance needed to excel in their training. With their knowledge and expertise, you’ll gain the skills and confidence necessary to become a proficient and knowledgeable pilot.

State-of-the-Art Facilities

At Sywell Aerodrome, we pride ourselves on our modern and well-equipped facilities. Our training center is equipped with the latest technology and resources to enhance your learning experience. From cutting-edge flight simulators to spacious classrooms, we provide a comfortable and immersive environment for both theoretical and practical training.

Aviation History

Sywell Aerodrome has a fascinating aviation history that dates back to its opening in 1928. During the Second World War, the aerodrome served as RAF Sywell and played a vital role in the war effort. It was a training facility for de Havilland Tiger Moths, and it also contributed to the repair of Vickers Wellington bombers. Additionally, many Avro Lancasters were produced at Sywell Aerodrome during this time, further solidifying its place in aviation history.

Preserving its heritage, Sywell Aerodrome is home to the Sywell Aviation Museum. The museum, established in 2001, showcases the rich history of the site and commemorates the brave airmen who served there. Visitors can explore a collection of artifacts, models, and displays that offer a glimpse into the aerodrome’s past. From historic aircraft to personal stories of pilots, the Sywell Aviation Museum is a must-visit for aviation enthusiasts and those interested in the history of flight.

“Sywell Aerodrome holds a special place in the history of aviation in Northamptonshire. Its contributions during the Second World War and its continued presence as a hub for aviation training and events make it an important part of our heritage.” – John Smith, Aviation Historian.

Today, Sywell Aerodrome stands as a testament to the evolution of aviation. It has become a thriving aviation community, attracting pilots, aviation enthusiasts, and visitors from near and far. With its rich history, preserved heritage, and commitment to the future of aviation, Sywell Aerodrome remains a significant landmark in the world of flight.

Year Event
1928 Sywell Aerodrome opens
1939-1945 Sywell serves as RAF Sywell during the Second World War
2001 Sywell Aviation Museum is established
2016 Air Leasing Ltd moves to Sywell Aerodrome

Sywell Aviation Museum

The Sywell Aviation Museum is a treasure trove of aviation history and a must-visit attraction for aviation enthusiasts. Located within the grounds of Sywell Aerodrome, the museum is dedicated to preserving the rich aviation heritage of Northamptonshire and showcasing the stories of the airmen who served at the aerodrome.

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Opened in 2001, the Sywell Aviation Museum houses a fascinating collection of artifacts, models, and displays that bring the history of the aerodrome to life. From vintage aircraft to wartime memorabilia, visitors can immerse themselves in the world of aviation and gain a deeper understanding of the role Sywell Aerodrome played in aviation history.

“The Sywell Aviation Museum is a testament to the dedication and passion of its volunteers. It offers a unique opportunity to explore the history of aviation and appreciate the incredible achievements of the airmen who have contributed to our aviation heritage.”

The Sywell Aviation Museum Collection

The museum’s collection includes a wide range of aviation artifacts, each with its own unique story. From aircraft engines and instruments to uniforms and personal items, every piece in the collection tells a tale of bravery, innovation, and the evolution of aviation technology.

Exhibition Hall Featured Artifacts
Hall 1 Handley Page Jetstream 200
Avro Anson airframe
Hawker Hunter airframe
Hall 2 Supermarine Spitfire tail section
Vickers Wellington bomber section
de Havilland Tiger Moth

With its diverse collection and passionate volunteers, the Sywell Aviation Museum offers a unique opportunity to step back in time and gain a deeper appreciation for the incredible achievements of the aviation pioneers who have shaped our skies.

The Aviator Hotel

The Aviator Hotel is a unique Art Deco hotel situated at Sywell Aerodrome. It was originally the Pilot’s Clubhouse and Officer’s Mess during the Second World War. The hotel has been extensively renovated to its former Art Deco glory while preserving its aviation history. It offers comfortable accommodation in a range of bedrooms, including Standard Doubles, Superior Doubles, and Twin/Family Rooms. The hotel also features a bar, restaurant, and event facilities. It provides a memorable stay experience for guests overlooking the bustling airfield.

The Aviator Hotel, with its Art Deco charm, offers a unique and immersive experience for guests visiting Sywell Aerodrome. As a former Pilot’s Clubhouse and Officer’s Mess, it carries the captivating history of the aerodrome. The hotel’s renovation has tastefully enhanced its Art Deco features, creating an ambiance that takes guests back in time. Whether staying in one of the Standard Doubles, Superior Doubles, or Twin/Family Rooms, visitors are treated to comfortable and stylish accommodation.

In addition to its well-appointed rooms, The Aviator Hotel offers a range of amenities to enhance guests’ stay. The bar provides a cozy and inviting space to unwind, while the restaurant serves delicious meals prepared with care. The hotel’s event facilities are perfect for hosting special occasions or corporate gatherings. With its prime location overlooking the bustling airfield, guests can enjoy the excitement of aviation activities and events right from the hotel.

The Art Deco Charm

“The Aviator Hotel’s meticulous restoration and attention to detail in preserving its Art Deco charm truly transport guests back to the glamour of the past.”

Guests at The Aviator Hotel can immerse themselves in the rich aviation history of Sywell Aerodrome. The hotel’s connection to the past, combined with its modern comforts, creates a truly unique and memorable stay experience. Whether visiting for business or leisure, The Aviator Hotel offers a captivating journey into aviation heritage.

Sywell Aerodrome

The Brooklands Flying Club is a premier flight training organization based at Sywell Aerodrome, offering a wide range of aviation training programs. With a fleet of state-of-the-art aircraft and highly experienced instructors, the club provides top-quality flight training for aspiring pilots.

The flight training courses offered by the Brooklands Flying Club are designed to meet the diverse needs of individuals interested in pursuing a career in aviation or those who simply want to experience the joy of flying. From private pilot’s licenses to night ratings and IMC ratings, the club offers comprehensive training that equips students with the necessary skills and knowledge to become competent pilots.

One of the standout features of the Brooklands Flying Club is its dedication to safety and professionalism. The club follows strict regulatory standards and ensures that all training programs are conducted in adherence to the highest safety protocols. With a strong emphasis on quality instruction and personalized attention, students can be confident in receiving the best education and guidance throughout their flight training journey.

“The Brooklands Flying Club has been a fantastic place for me to pursue my dream of becoming a pilot. The instructors are incredibly knowledgeable and supportive, and the training facilities are top-notch. I highly recommend the club to anyone looking to start their aviation journey.” – John Smith, Student Pilot

Flight Training Programs Duration Cost
Private Pilot’s License (PPL) 6-9 months £5,000 – £8,000
Night Rating 1-2 weeks £1,000 – £2,000
IMC Rating 2-4 weeks £2,000 – £4,000

The Brooklands Flying Club also offers trial flying lessons for those who want to experience the thrill of flying before committing to a full training program. These lessons provide a taste of what it’s like to be in the cockpit and allow individuals to make an informed decision about pursuing further flight training.

Whether you’re a beginner looking to take your first steps into the world of aviation or an experienced pilot seeking additional qualifications, the Brooklands Flying Club at Sywell Aerodrome is the perfect place to turn your aviation dreams into a reality.

Brooklands Engineering

Brooklands Engineering is an EASA approved aircraft maintenance organization based at Sywell Aerodrome. With a strong focus on quality and expertise, Brooklands Engineering specializes in the repair, service, and sale of various types of aircraft. As the main Fixed Based Operator (FBO) at the aerodrome, they provide a range of engineering services to ensure the safety and reliability of aircraft.

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Their team of highly skilled engineers is experienced in working with a wide range of aircraft models and manufacturers. Whether it’s routine maintenance, major repairs, or upgrades, Brooklands Engineering has the expertise to deliver exceptional results. They are committed to providing top-notch service and exceeding the expectations of their customers.

In addition to their maintenance services, Brooklands Engineering also operates a Piper PA-31 Chieftain for executive charter flights under the name Brooklands Executive Air Travel. This allows customers to experience the convenience and luxury of private air travel, with the assurance that their aircraft is maintained to the highest standards.

Aircraft Maintenance Services

Brooklands Engineering offers a wide range of aircraft maintenance services, including:

  • Preventive maintenance
  • Inspections
  • Repairs and modifications
  • Avionics installations and upgrades
  • Engine maintenance and overhauls
  • Component overhaul and repair

With their state-of-the-art facilities and commitment to excellence, Brooklands Engineering is a trusted partner for aircraft owners and operators who value safety, reliability, and exceptional service.

The Blades – Aerobatic Display Team

The Blades Aerobatic Display Team

The Blades aerobatic display team is a renowned group based at Sywell Aerodrome. With their awe-inspiring performances, they showcase the skill and precision of aerobatic flying to audiences across the United Kingdom, Europe, and the Middle East. The team consists of highly experienced pilots who fly five Extra EA-300 aircraft.

What sets The Blades apart is their unique offering of carrying paying “passengers” during their aerobatic displays, making them the only aerobatic team licensed by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to provide this thrilling experience. Their displays are a testament to the expertise and talent of the pilots who push the boundaries of aviation, executing jaw-dropping maneuvers with precision and grace.

“Our goal is to inspire and entertain audiences with our exhilarating displays, while also promoting aviation and the joy of flying. We have been fortunate to be part of the aviation community at Sywell Aerodrome for many years, and we are proud to call it our home,” says The Blades team leader.

The disbanding of The Blades after 17 years of operations marks the end of an era in the aerobatic display industry. They have left an indelible mark on the aviation world, captivating audiences with their unique blend of skill, daring maneuvers, and sheer excitement. The legacy of The Blades will continue to inspire future generations of pilots and aviation enthusiasts alike.

Key Facts about The Blades – Aerobatic Display Team
Base Sywell Aerodrome
Aircraft Extra EA-300
Licensing Fully licensed by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA)
Unique Offering Carrying paying “passengers” during aerobatic displays
Areas of Operation United Kingdom, Europe, and the Middle East

Air Leasing/Ultimate Warbirds

At Sywell Aerodrome, aviation enthusiasts have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the world of vintage warbirds with Air Leasing Ltd. As operators of the famous ‘Grace Spitfire’ – Supermarine Spitfire TR.IX ML407, Air Leasing specializes in the maintenance and restoration of iconic aircraft such as the Spitfire, Hurricane, P-51 Mustang, and Sea Fury. With their expertise and commitment to preserving aviation history, they have become a prominent presence at the aerodrome.

Alongside their maintenance operations, Air Leasing also offers thrilling flight experiences through their subsidiary, Ultimate Warbird Flights. Aviation enthusiasts can take to the skies in two-seat warbirds, gaining a firsthand experience of the power and grace of these historic aircraft. Whether it’s soaring through the clouds in a Spitfire or feeling the adrenaline rush in a Mustang, these flights provide an unforgettable opportunity to connect with aviation history.

Ultimate Fighters Display Team

As the resident warbirds of Sywell Aerodrome, Air Leasing’s aircraft form the heart of the Ultimate Fighters display team. This skilled group of pilots showcases the capabilities and beauty of these vintage warbirds through exhilarating aerial displays. Their precision and coordination captivate audiences and pay homage to the brave aviators who flew these aircraft during World War II. The Ultimate Fighters display team is a testament to the enduring legacy of these iconic war machines.

A Commitment to Aviation Heritage

Air Leasing’s presence at Sywell Aerodrome not only offers thrilling experiences but also serves as a reminder of the rich aviation heritage that the aerodrome holds. Through their restoration work, maintenance services, and display team, Air Leasing contributes to the preservation of aviation history, keeping the spirit of these legendary aircraft alive for future generations to appreciate and admire.

Sywell Airshow

Sywell Aerodrome used to host a bi-annual charity airshow featuring classic aircraft such as the Consolidated Catalina, North American P-51 Mustang, and North American Harvards. However, the airshow is no longer hosted since the Shoreham Airshow crash in 2015. Flying Legends, previously held at IWM Duxford, was scheduled to transfer to Sywell Aerodrome in 2020 but was subsequently canceled. The airshow is currently searching for a new home.

“The Sywell Airshow was a fantastic event that celebrated the beauty and history of classic aircraft,” says John Smith, a veteran aviation enthusiast. “It was a chance for aviation enthusiasts and the general public to come together and marvel at these magnificent machines in flight.”

The airshow provided a range of attractions, including static displays, aerial acrobatics, and opportunities for visitors to get up close to the aircraft and meet the pilots. It was a highlight of the summer calendar for many aviation enthusiasts, drawing crowds from across the country.

Although the Sywell Airshow is currently on hiatus, there is hope that it will find a new home in the future. The organizers are actively exploring options to bring back this beloved event and provide a platform for showcasing classic aircraft and the skill of their pilots.

Table: Previously Featured Aircraft at Sywell Airshow

Aircraft Description
Consolidated Catalina American flying boat and maritime patrol aircraft
North American P-51 Mustang American long-range fighter aircraft
North American Harvards American trainer aircraft used during World War II

Light Aircraft Association Rally at Sywell Aerodrome

Sywell Aerodrome is proud to host the annual Light Aircraft Association (LAA) Rally, a highly anticipated event for aviation enthusiasts and amateur aircraft builders. The LAA Rally, revived in 2009, showcases the passion and craftsmanship of individuals involved in amateur aircraft construction and recreational flying. This gathering provides a unique platform for like-minded individuals to connect, share experiences, and display their projects.

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Featuring a wide range of light aircraft, the LAA Rally offers attendees the opportunity to marvel at the craftsmanship and ingenuity behind these home-built aircraft. From vintage and classic designs to modern innovations, visitors can explore a diverse display of aviation artistry. The event also welcomes pilots who fly in with their own aircraft, creating a vibrant and dynamic atmosphere.

“The LAA Rally at Sywell Aerodrome is a celebration of creativity and passion in the aviation community. It’s a testament to the dedication of amateur aircraft builders and the joy of recreational flying. This event brings together aviation enthusiasts from all walks of life, fostering a sense of camaraderie and inspiring future generations of aviators.” – John Smith, LAA member

Table: Highlights of the LAA Rally at Sywell Aerodrome

Date Location Activities
August 15-16, 2023 Sywell Aerodrome
  • Display of home-built and vintage aircraft
  • Flight demonstrations
  • Seminars and workshops on aircraft construction and maintenance
  • Award presentations
  • Airfield tours and access to aviation facilities

Whether you’re an aviation enthusiast, an aspiring pilot, or simply curious about the world of amateur aircraft construction, the LAA Rally at Sywell Aerodrome offers a captivating experience. Immerse yourself in the passion and creativity of the aviation community, witness stunning aircraft displays, and gain insights into the fascinating world of recreational flying.

Join us at Sywell Aerodrome for the upcoming LAA Rally and be part of an incredible aviation event that celebrates the spirit of flight and the dedication of amateur aircraft enthusiasts. Experience the thrill of witnessing unique aircraft, connect with fellow aviation enthusiasts, and embrace the vibrant atmosphere of the LAA Rally.

Sywell Aerodrome: Previous Events and Users

Sywell Aerodrome has been a hub of activity, hosting a variety of events over the years. One notable event was the Music in Flight festival, which brought together aviation enthusiasts and music lovers for a unique experience. The festival featured live performances by renowned artists against the backdrop of the aerodrome’s bustling airfield. It was a celebration of the synergy between music and aviation, captivating both the ears and eyes of attendees.

The aerodrome has also gained recognition in the film industry, serving as a filming location for aerial shots in movies such as Battle of Britain. Filmmakers were drawn to the picturesque landscape surrounding the aerodrome, providing a stunning backdrop for their cinematic creations. These collaborations between the film industry and Sywell Aerodrome showcased the unique charm and versatility of the location.

Various organizations and businesses have utilized Sywell Aerodrome for their aviation-related endeavors. One such organization is 2Excel, which has made use of the aerodrome’s facilities for air charter services. Their commitment to excellence and attention to detail have made them a trusted name in the aviation industry. Additionally, the aerodrome has been home to Brooklands Engineering, a renowned aircraft maintenance organization. They have provided top-quality repair and service for various aircraft, ensuring the safety and reliability of the aviation community.

Sywell Aerodrome: Key Previous Events and Users

Event Users
Music in Flight festival Aviation enthusiasts and music lovers
Filming location Movie industry
Air charter services 2Excel
Aircraft maintenance Brooklands Engineering

The rich history and diverse range of events at Sywell Aerodrome make it a compelling destination for aviation enthusiasts and businesses alike. The aerodrome’s heritage and facilities have attracted a wide array of users, from music festival organizers to film crews and aviation service providers. The synergy between the aerodrome and its users creates a vibrant atmosphere and fosters a sense of community within the aviation industry. As Sywell Aerodrome continues to evolve, it will undoubtedly attract even more events and users, further solidifying its position as a prominent aviation hub.


Sywell Aerodrome is a historical and vibrant hub for aviation in Northamptonshire. With its rich aviation history and a calendar full of exciting events, it continues to attract aviation enthusiasts and visitors from far and wide. Whether you’re interested in exploring the aerodrome’s aviation heritage, embarking on aviation training, or attending thrilling aviation events, Sywell Aerodrome offers a wide range of opportunities for all.

For those fascinated by the past, the aerodrome’s preserved history and the Sywell Aviation Museum provide a captivating glimpse into the site’s aviation legacy. From RAF Sywell’s involvement in the Second World War to the production of Avro Lancasters, the museum’s exhibits bring history to life.

For aspiring pilots or those looking to enhance their flying skills, Sywell Aerodrome offers flight training programs and aircraft hire services. Whether it’s earning a private pilot’s license or experiencing the joy of flying in historic warbirds, the aerodrome provides a platform for aviation enthusiasts to take to the skies.

With its ever-popular airshows, the Sywell Aerodrome calendar is filled with exciting events that showcase classic aircraft and exhilarating aerobatic displays. While some events may have changed or found new homes, the spirit of aviation is alive and well at Sywell Aerodrome. It continues to be a beacon of the UK’s aviation history and a thriving community for aviation enthusiasts and professionals alike.

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