The Channel Islands
Jersey Airport is the busiest of the Channel Islands airports. Scheduled traffic to both the British mainland and France is joined by an interesting selection of summer charters each year. Because links with Germany are entrenched in the island`s history, it`s common to see planes from the main German carriers.
Military aircraft sometimes visit whilst training but Jersey is better known for the variety of biz-jets, many of them high-end, that call in throughout the year.
The large modern terminal building does not have any viewing opportunities unless airside where there is a large, bright lounge on the first floor. It offers great photo opportunities, depending on the light and weather, but the windows could do with a clean.
The following painting of the Red Arrows over Elizabeth Castle, St Aubin`s Bay, Jersey, hangs in the observation lounge. It was done to celebrate 40 years of the RAF`s world famous display team performing at the island`s annual Battle of Britain air display which subsequently became the Jersey International Air Display. The artist is Neil Mackenzie.
Outwith the airport, planes can be photographed at a distance from many locations around the island while on approach or climb out.
Gulfstream G500 N542AP and Falcon 8X G-KOLO. Saturday 11 June 2022.
The Jersey Aero Club, just a 15 minute stroll away from the terminal, welcomes visitors and I believe they also post information on what`s due in. They have a café/restaurant with a balcony which is ideal for watching and photographing aircraft movements. The island is a magnet for GA pilots and a procession of non-UK registered planes drop-in throughout the summer months.
There are a couple of preserved aircraft at Jersey Airport, the first being ex-RAF Percival-Hunting Jet Provost T.4 XP573 which is used for fire and rescue training. This aircraft dates from early 1962 and served until 3 November 1970 when it was withdrawn from use and put into storage at RAF Shawbury, Shropshire, then RAF Kemble, having been transferred to the latter airbase by road. From 9 August 1973 to 1994 the jet served as an Instructional Trainer at RAF Halton during which time it was given the maintenance number 8236M. Thereafter it was taken to RAF Lyneham and placed aboard a C-130 Hercules for the flight to Jersey Airport. (JP photo © Aerial Visuals/Martin Laycock).
On display close to the terminal is ex-Jersey Airlines De Havilland DH.114 Heron 2 G-AORG `The Duchess of Brittany'. It`s fate was left hanging in the balance when the company that owned it collapsed, however, Jersey Aero Club Treasurer and aviation enthusiast Matt Palmer stepped in to save it with a nominal bid of £1. He was surprised and delighted that his was the only offer and `The Duchess` is now a static exhibit passed by tens of thousands of air passengers transiting the terminal each year. Apart from its time with Jersey Airlines, it served from 1961 to 1989 in the Royal Navy as a Sea Heron, serial number KR441. It had originally been hoped to restore the plane to flying condition to participate in airshows and other events, but the cost of this work has proved prohibitive.
Several attractions on the island have a small display related to Jersey`s aviation heritage. The Maritime Museum in St Helier displays some of the wreckage of the Jersey Airways flying boat Cloud of Iona which went missing in fog during a flight between Guernsey and Jersey in late July 1936. Thirteen days later, pieces of the plane were found on the western side of the Minquiers Reef, (below) about 15 miles southwest of Jersey. All ten passengers and crew were lost.