Harrods Aviation heavily increase GSE inventory

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Leading London-based FBO chain, Harrods Aviation, has invested over half a million pounds in new ground support equipment to support both bases at London Luton and London Stansted.

This huge investment in upgrading essential operating equipment reflects how busy the company has been in recent months, after seeing an increase in large cabin movements.

The new equipment purchased includes a TLD TMX550 Tractor Tug, with a gross weight of 55 tons, and a maximum drive-line capability of 370 kN (83,200 lbf). Designed to perform push back and towing operations up to Boeing B747-800 and Airbus A380, this new piece will help Harrods Aviation ramp staff to provide efficient manoeuvres.

Also purchased were two new sets of JBT self-propelled passenger steps, designed for universal use with the capability of servicing aircraft with passenger doors up to 5.8m high.

A new Charlatte EBT electric tractor is going to be used for towing equipment such as GPUs and baggage with a towing capacity of 20 tons.

A Hitzinger D-Power 180 GPU, which provides reduced fuel consumption, and requiring less maintenance due to less stress and extremely low running noise, and various new hydro system tow bars, completes the new line up of equipment.

Kerry Besgrove, Operations Director comments, "This ongoing investment is needed to maintain and increase customer satisfaction by making sure that we have the best, most up to date equipment for servicing our customers’ aircraft. The increase in large cabin movements that we have seen reflects the fact that we keep our customers happy though efficient and seamless customer service. Besgrove continues, ‘having new equipment aides our staff in making sure aircraft departs on time with minimum delays for customers. We have also invested in intensive training for staff using the new equipment to provide the optimum customer experience."

Collaboration agreement with Cranfield Airport

In further news, Harrods Aviation has announced the signing of an agreement that will see it working closely with Cranfield to broaden its offering to customers using the University-owned airfield.

Starting in April, Harrods Aviation will supply operational handling to its business jet customers as well as customer service and front of house expertise to those arriving at the Bedfordshire facility.

"Cranfield is ideally located to support those private aircraft looking to take advantage of the close proximity to London Luton Airport, as well as the ideal road links North and South utilising the greatly improved M1 motorway", said Paul Norton, Harrods Aviation Managing Director.

Norton continues, "With the popularity of Luton Airport showing no signs of decreasing, we have been looking for a solution that meets the needs of our growing customer base. For those seeking 24/7 access for any aircraft type we already offer a great solution at London Stansted, however we feel the close proximity of Cranfield and the ease at which aircraft can operate at this smaller airfield will appeal to our private operators."

Cranfield boosts an 1,800m runway, with 24/7 capability and no airport slot requirements.

Jo Bampton, Airport Manager of Cranfield Airport, said, "We are confident that working with a tried, tested and trusted aviation brand like Harrods Aviation will benefit both organisations. This new partnership will provide Harrods Aviation’s customers with an ideal alternative location, close enough to London to be convenient, yet still private and secure. With no slot restrictions and an efficient customs and immigration process, customers can be in central London less than 60 minutes after arrival."

Cranfield is an exclusively postgraduate university focused on the specialist themes of Aerospace, Defence & Security, Energy & Power, Environment & Agrifood, Manufacturing, Transport Systems, and Water. The Cranfield School of Management is a world leader in management education and research.

BlueSky Business Aviation News | 30th March 2017 | Issue #410