Brighton City Airport

North Yorkshire aviation company acquires Brighton City Airport

28 August 2019

A North Yorkshire aviation company has acquired Brighton City Airport with the backing of a six-figure funding package from HSBC UK.

Cyrrus, established in 2007 in Thirsk, is a global aviation consultancy which provides a range of specialist aviation support services to airports in the UK and overseas. With funding from HSBC UK, the business has purchased a 25-year lease on the airfield and the associated aviation operations of Brighton City Airport – formerly known as Shoreham. The historic aviation facility is the world’s oldest commercial airport and serves private flying, flight training and business and executive aircraft from asphalt and grass runways.

The new owners are now driving forward with a long-term growth plan to attract more private and executive flyers to the Airport. It has already welcomed a new management team and in the near future will be introducing satellite-based approach procedures to aid landing in low-visibility conditions. The business also plans to enhance the airport’s visitor offering, including improvements to facilities in the airport’s iconic 1930s art deco terminal building.

Cyrrus anticipates that it will increase aircraft movements over last year by circa 12 per cent, create opportunities for new jobs and increase revenue by 5-10 per cent in the next 12 months.

Rob Cooke, Managing Director of Cyrrus, said:

Acquiring Brighton City Airport is a great opportunity to develop and improve a much-loved, local operational base for private and executive flight operations, as well as developing a go-to destination for leisure fliers. With HSBC UK’s backing and guidance, we’ve been able to achieve our ambition of owning and operating an airport, as well as contributing to the local and regional economy.


Stephen Smith, Business Banking Relationship Director, HSBC UK, added:

We’ve had a great relationship with Cyrrus for well over 10 years so when the opportunity arose for the business to acquire such a historic airport we were delighted to support Rob and the team.

Brighton City Airport is the world’s oldest purpose-built airport, having officially opened for business in June 1911. The airport currently handles around 50,000 aircraft movements each year, making it one of the busiest general aviation airports in the UK. It has its own air traffic control facility and is equipped with runway and taxiway lighting for after-dark operations within licensed hours.

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