Newtownards, N. Ireland

Opened in 1934, Newtownards Airfields is now the premier GA airfield in Northern Ireland, and it’s not difficult to see why.  It is the only airfield in Ireland with 3 hard runways and lies on the northern bank of Strangford Lough, one of the most beautiful parts of the country, and yet is only a few miles from the thriving city of Belfast.

The 25 acre Marm factory site, which is adjacent to Newtownards Airfield, has been granted outline planning permission for a ‘mixed-use’ development comprising a hotel, nursing home, residential units, fitness centre, bank, health centre, day nursery, business units, petrol station and fast food outlets.  The business units that border the airfield east of the site could be replaced with 10 residential hangar homes to the south, complementing the residential use, and 4 ‘live/work’ hangar homes to the north, complementing the commercial use of the site, all with airside access.

The owner of the site wants to sell the whole of it to a single developer, who will then have to replace the entrance with a roundabout and put in the roads and services for each sub-development, of which the hangar homes is one.  An offer for the land adjoining the airfield has been given to the agent along with an offer to the Mount Stewart Estate for right of way (airside access) to the airfield, which it owns, but until the whole site is sold, nothing more can be done.