Oxford (Kidlington) Airport

“London Oxford Airport” – some key information       (used to be called Kidlington)
It is a small private airport.    It specializes in general and business aviation and  was one of  the largest European air training schools.
Wikipedia states that “By 1968, it had become the second busiest airfield in
the UK, with 223,270 movements – just 10% fewer movements than Heathrow”.
Oxford Airport’s website states:   “Oxford Airport’s primary users are pilot training
schools (40% of traffic), recreational general aviation, business, private and
utility helicopters and business aviation, consisting of air taxis, chartered and private jets and turboprops (10-15% of traffic).”
“Our primary focus today is on developing services and facilities for the business aviation market (referred to occasionally as ‘Corporate’ or ‘Executive’ Aviation) which
operates aircraft on a sole-use chartered or private basis. This has been driven
by a significant decline in pilot training activity upon which the airport has
been dependent for most of its 70 year history.”
Now called London Oxford Airport

In August 2009 the airport was rebranded as London Oxford Airport. The move attracted much press comment, and criticism from Oxford Civic Society, which described the new name as misleading; the airport is 59  miles (95  km) from Marble Arch.   However, it was argued that highlighting proximity to London would make the airport more attractive to the overseas business aviation community.
(See news articles commenting on this below, under News).


Distance to London Airports
London City                            9 miles (15km)
London Heathrow         18 miles (29km)
London Gatwick               30 miles (48km)
London Luton                       34 miles (55km)
London Stansted          38 miles (61km)
London Southend         43 miles (69km)
London Oxford                  62 miles (100km)
London Ashford              73 miles (117km)    = Lydd airport
Source: Google Maps – shortest route starting from Parliament Square
Pet Travel Scheme
In October 2009, London Oxford Airport was approved as a UK entry point for pets,
under the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS).    It is one of only two UK business aviation centres to offer this service.
** NEW **   Flights from Oxford to Switzerland starting December 2009


“London Oxford Airport will commence its first international scheduled services
to and from Geneva commencing Saturday 19th December 2009 and each Saturday thereafter.
Ski season only.

“Swiss regional airline Baboo will operate the service utilising the 75-seat
Dash 8-Q400 aircraft. One of Switzerland’s favourite airlines, Baboo has carried
well over a million passengers since its establishment five years ago. Baboo offer a ‘full frills’ service with complimentary drinks, canapés and a generous
baggage allowance included within the price. Costs start from £89 each way, all
inclusive of fees and taxes.”
Oxford is offering ski packages from the airport, to Switzerland.
** NEW **     Flights from Oxford to Jersey in summer only, starting summer 2009
“All flights are operated by regional airline Air Southwest using Bombardier Dash 8-300 50-seat turboprop aircraft with seat only prices from £150 return inclusive
of all handling and baggage fees.”     May to September.
“The airport does not have a commercial terminal facility, but does have a dedicated
business and private aviation centre which can host limited scheduled flights.
We continue to explore niche opportunities for commercial services that can easily
be undertaken within the facilities available.”

Airport Owner:


OA Acquisitions Limited, owned by the billionaire Reuben brothers, David and Simon Reuben.
(Sold in July 2007, by BBA Aviation)
Airport Operator:
Oxford Aviation Services Ltd.
Airport website:
Airport Master Plan:
There is no Master Plan, but airport website says:
“In late 2004, Oxford Airport submitted a master planning statement with Cherwell
District Council, our local authority, highlighting all the anticipated ‘major’
developments for the foreseeable future, in practice, a 10+ year vision. That
plan highlighted key requirements for more hangar space, other buildings and the
installation of precision navigation equipment, namely an Instrument Landing System,
along with other infrastructure changes to upgrade and modernise the airport.”
There are no significant applications pending or anticipated at this time (June
Airport Consultative Committee:
Airport Consultation Committee
There are no CAA passenger figures, as they are not commercial passenger flights.


Air Traffic Movements

(not CAA figures, as these are not commercial flights)
2009             36,560
2008             46,817
2007             50,857      and just 32% of activity levels 10 years ago
2006             70,561      160,000 movements annually is the max allowed2005            80,415

2000         122,588

1998          156,618

Air Freight:

The airport can only take air freight up to 1200 kilos, due to short runway.
It has AirMed and pet transport services only.      Details


Airport Contact Details:

Oxford Airport,

Langford Lane,
Oxfordshire. OX5 1RA
Tel: 01865 844 260
Email:     info@oxfordairport.co.uk
Map:Multimap of OX5 1RA:

Hours of Operation – limits on night time activity between midnight and 06:00 hrs each day.
Also a cap on such overnight movements to no more than 500 medevac or air ambulance
operations per annum.

Flight Training Circuits – limits on circuits for training purposes after 23:00 hrs and before 07:00
hrs each day.


Total Annual Movements – No more than 160,000 per annum of which no more than 500 can be Stage II or
noisier jets and no more than 2,000 should be 50 tonne or heavier jets.


Static Testing of Jet Engines – restricted to a specified location on the airfield and limited to no more
than 6 hours weekdays and 3 hours at weekends. No such activity should take place
before 07:00 hrs or after 19:00 hrs on any day.


Noise and Environmental Issues

Noise Issues Hotline:Tel: 01865 290 664

(will default to answer phone if busy)

Fax: 01865 290 605

e-mail:   operations@oxfordairport.co.uk or online form

Local community group:         – None
Runway length:
1,319 metres.    4,327 feet.        Asphalt
Oxford, July 2003 – “Oxford Airport was  given the go-ahead for a 10% extension of its licensed
runway length from 1200m (3,937ft) to 1319m (4,327ft) allowing for a significant
improvement in terms of access for charter and public transport operations.”
More information:
Wikipedia article

Some recent news stories about Oxford Airport:

News stories about the airport can be found at the UK Airport News website :

Biggin Hill and Oxford airports sue RAF Northolt over its expansion into commercial private jet flights

Two small UK airports that depend on business jets, Oxford and Biggin Hill, are suing the military airport, RAF Northolt because it has expanded into civilian flights. It has done this to make money for the MoD, after their budget cuts. They claim that, because Northolt is operated by the MoD and therefore taxpayer funded, it has an unfair competition advantage. The expansion at Northolt also affects the number of business jet flights that Luton and Farnborough can get, and their flight numbers have fallen in recent years. In May 2013 Northolt said it would begin to more than double the number of civilian flights from a self-imposed cap of 7,000 to 17,500 by 2016. Of that total, military movements will remain at about 5,500 a year. Northolt is the closest private jet airport to central London. The MD of Biggin Hill said: “We, like Oxford, like Farnborough, have all been through a very tough time and they’ve pulled the rug from underneath us. It’s not a level playing field.” They claim Northolt has about 15% of the London market, and are cheaper as they don’t have to meet the same safety standards as commercial airports.

Click here to view full story…

Oxford Airport reports 12% growth

26.4.2010      Oxford Airport increased its visiting, non-resident jet movements,
year on year by 31.6% and seen its business aviation movements increase 12% during
the period April 2009 to March 2010. The airport is now handling an average 20
business aircraft movements a day.   the first quarter brought a 25% rise in business
aviation traffic, compared with the first quarter of 2009.     Click here to view full story …..

Varsity Express suspends Oxford to Edinburgh route

 8th March 2010       “Varsity Express regrettably announce…the suspension of scheduled services
on their Oxford to Edinburgh route.   The reason for this suspension is due to
operational issues between Varsity Air Services Ltd and the airline and AOC holder
who have been contracted to operate the Jetstream 31 type on our behalf and that
was being used on the route. All further ticket sales have been suspended until
further notice.”
Click here to view full story…
New Oxford airline to fly second route – Newcastle

11.2.2010          Start-up regional airline Varsity Express is to add a second domestic route
from its Oxford base.The carrier plans to serve Newcastle in addition to a service to Edinburgh which
is due to start on March 1st.

Daily Newcastle flights on weekdays will be introduced from April 5.   The distance
is all of 255 miles.   Click here to  view full story …..

Edinburgh to Oxford flights: Martin Halstead is back in the air

7th February 2010       Martin Halstead’s Varsity Express will start flights from Oxford to Edinburgh
next month. He would not disclose the identity of Varsity’s backers but they are
understood to be a group of British businessmen with property interests in the
Canary Islands. The flights — in an 18-seat Jetstream — will run only on weekdays.
Halstead is looking at adding another route. (Times)       Click here to view full story…
Oxford to gain Scottish air link to Edinburgh

 20th January 2010         A start-up regional airline plans to run flights between Oxford and Edinburgh.
Flights by Varsity Express will be operated by 18-seat Jetstream 31 aircraft and
will run daily on weekdays from March 1. Varsity will offer a business class style
service, serving complimentary tea, coffee and water plus a small snack. They
expect to carry 6,500 passengers in the 1st year in a mix of 55% business, 45%
travelling on leisure. (TravelMole)           Click here to view full story…
04.01.10 Award for Oxford Airport

21.12.09 Baboo launch Oxford – Geneva flights
15.10.09 Oxford Airport gets pet travel approval14.10.09 Oxford Airport gets Geneva flights

13.09.09 Climate protestors arrested at Oxford Airport
17.8.2009   (Oxford Mail)   Outrage at airport rebranding
An Oxford Civic Society member said: “Good grief. Oxford is a great place in
its own right and I find it insulting it is being considered just another offshoot
of London.
“This is an insult to the major historical and cultural impact Oxford has had
on the country.   Anyone who wanted to go to London wouldn’t want to end up in
17.8.2009   (BBC)   ‘London’ airport name change row
19.8.2009   (Guardian – comment)   New York, Paris … Oxford?
      …. This latest, rather desperate, rebranding ….
19.8.2009   (Telegraph) London Oxford Airport – a Tale of Two Cities
    … The re-branding of Oxford Airport is shameless, but the tactic is nothing
new …
20.08.09 New name for ‘London’ Oxford Airport
20.07.09 Oxford Airport plans business and leisure flights
15.06.09 Oxford Airport – Jersey flights popular
13.07.08 Oxford Airport upgrades safety
02.06.08 Oxford Airport gains VLJ operator
27.05.08 Oxford Airport business aviation centre set for summer launch
19.05.08 PremiAir picks Oxford Airport as new maintenance base
28.04.08 Oxford Airport announce new customer service manager
28.01.08 Oxford Airport commence work on new private aviation terminal
20.12.07 Pilot found alive after air crash near Oxford Airport

21.07.07 Oxford Airport sold for £40m
13.03.07 Oxford Airport confirms runway extension and landing systems works16.03.06 Poor take-off sees Oxford – Cambridge flights grounded

16.01.06 Airline promote Oxford – Cambridge Airport flights with race09.01.06 Oxford – Cambridge Airport flights to be launched


Oxford airport’s business aviation centre on course for summer launch

27th March 2008       Businesses in the Oxford-Milton Keynes-Northampton arc are promised greatly improved
transport linkages when Oxford Airport completes construction of a brand new business
aviation centre this summer. The new facility replaces the existing general aviation
facility. (Business Weekly)

Click here to view full story…