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Eastern Airways

TheLocalYokel

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From today the Sunday late afternoon/evening flight from ABZ to BRS and return is no longer non-stop, as it has been since its inception three or four years ago and as are all the weekday rotations still.

Instead the southbound T3 4505 will depart ABZ at 1555 and call at LBA, arriving there at 1655, before flying to BRS, arriving 1815.

The northbound T3 4504 will depart BRS at 1835, calling at LBA en route. It will depart LBA at 1945, arriving at ABZ at 2045.

It's possible to book ABZ to BRS and BRS to ABZ, ABZ to LBA and LBA to ABZ on this service, but not LBA to BRS or BRS to LBA.

Equipment is shown in the timetable as a Saab 2000.
 

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Aviador

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What a/c type was used on the service before? At least the Saab 2000 is a popular aircraft with the passengers and should represent a partial upgrade if the service was operated by J41 aircraft before.
 

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The normal aircraft on the BRS-ABZ route is the J41 (it's 3 x daily Mon to Fri), although Saab 2000s are not unknown, especially on Sundays, so a permanent Sunday Saab will be regularise something that has been intermittent in the past.

I suspect that when the Saab operated the non-stop ABZ-BRS and back it was for operational reasons; it may now be for commercial reasons, given the ABZ-LBA and LBA-ABZ sectors will effectively be two routes combined.

Bristol also sees a daily Saab 2000 from the German airline OLT on the Bremen-Bristol route. Used to be Hamburg-Bremen-Bristol but the Hamburg leg was dropped earlier this year. It's primarily for Bae - it used to operate from Filton as a sort of in-house venture but Bae made it available for the general public as well in a bid to recoup some of the expense of its operation.

Sorry - off topic a bit about Eastern.
 

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[textarea]Wheelchair athlete banned from plane 'because he couldn't walk'

One of Britain's top wheelchair athletes was prevented from travelling to a race after an airline said he would have to walk up steps to board.
 
Richie Powell, 39, was booked on a flight to Scotland to take part in a wheelchair race.

But as he tried to board the plane at Bristol airport he was told: "You can only fly if you can walk up the aircraft steps."
 
Mr Powell has not walked since he broke his back in a motorcycle accident when he was 18.

He said: "I have been flying all over the world to take part in wheelchair races – this has never happened before.

"I was left feeling angry and embarrassed."

He offered to get out of the wheelchair and use his powerful arms to ease himself up the steps of the Eastern Airways aircraft.

But the airline again refused him permission to board on safety grounds.

Father-of-two Mr Powell, of Carmarthen, West Wales, said: "It's basically discrimination. The told me: "You can't come on unless you can walk."

"But they knew full well that I was in a wheelchair. I'd told them when I phoned to check the flight had not been affected by the volcanic dust.

"Not just that but I flew with the same airline to Scotland for the race last year and there wasn't a problem."

Mr Powell competed at the 1992 Barcelona Paralympic Games, the 1994 Commonwealth Games in Canada and the 1998 World Championships.

He was booked onto the flight by Aberdeen Council who had organised a 10K race he was taking part in.

A spokeswoman from Aberdeenshire Council said: "We booked the flights and had previously used the same airline and booking process for the same event in 2009."

A statement from Eastern Airways said: "The booking that was made on behalf of Mr Powell highlighted that he needed wheelchair assistance but was able to climb the aircraft steps unaided.

"Unfortunately that wasn't the case and Mr Powell was refused boarding on safety grounds.

"Wheelchair assistance is available to and from all our aircraft, as long as passengers are able to walk up the aircraft steps and onto the aircraft without assistance."

Mr Powell later flew to Edinburgh with easyJet and was driven to the event in Balmoral.[/textarea]

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/trave ... -walk.html

Seems a peculiar stance from Eastern.

If he was subsequently able to fly with easyJet there was presumably the same potential 'safety grounds' issue.

Perhaps the problem was the small Jetstream being not accessible to an ambulift – I assume it's not.

If the argument is that someone who couldn't walk unaided would present a safety issue once on board an aircraft then many disabled people would never fly at all.

My wife once broke her leg whilst on holiday and was wheelchair-bound for the rest of the stay. Her leg was in plaster and she needed three seats on the return flight (fortunately the travel insurance paid). She boarded and exited the Excel Boeing 737-800 by lift but would still have found great difficulty in quickly leaving the aircraft in an emergency.

It seems we were fortunate that our carrier was not Eastern, yet even they seem to make up the rules as they go along if the man was able to fly with them last year.

Maybe it was down to an over-zealous member of staff at Bristol Airport.
 

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The lack of access to an ambulift wouldn't normally pose a problem. I might be wrong but I am sure Eastern Airways J31 and J41's don't have the inflatable shoots which is almost certainly the reason why the man wasn't accepted onto the flight.
 

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The late afternoon/early evening rotation from/to Aberdeen now operates each way via Leeds-Bradford Mon to Fri and Sun (no Sat service).

In summer 09 and winter 09/10 only the Sunday service operated via LBA with the others non-stop.

Equipment for flights operating via LBA is scheduled as a Saab 2000 and there is still no booking facility between BRS and LBA.
 

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From the second week in February Eastern appears to be rationalising some of its routes following its purchase of Air Southwest.

From the timetables of ASW and Eastern the morning PLH-BRS-LBA-BRS-PLH will be replaced by a southbound ABZ-LBA-BRS-PLH (a Dash-8-300 operation) working opposite a northbound PLH-BRS-LBA-ABZ (a Dash 8-300 operation). The same will apply in the evening.

The current morning and evening Eastern ABZ-BRS-ABZ (an Eastern Jetstream operation) will be incorporated into the new diagram. The lunchtime ABZ-BRS-ABZ will remain a non-stop Jetstream in both directions.

Currently it doesn't appear possible to book from Plymouth to Aberdeen or vice versa and the ASW website still shows PLH-BRS-LBA (and reverse) as an Air Southwest route whilst the Eastern website shows the ABZ-LBA-BRS portion as an Eastern route.
 

lbaspotter

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Had it confirmed today that Eastern Airways will be taking over and operating the Bristol-Leeds-Aberdeen service from October 2nd 2011.

Flights should be bookable on the Eastern Airways website shortly. The service will continue to be operated by the Dash 8-300's,
 

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The Eastern booking website has shown flights in each direction between BRS and ABZ morning and evening with one stop - presumably LBA - for a little while, on test dates in October (the rest of the summer after Air Southwest ceases to operate) and in November, the start of the winter period. The equipment is a Dash 8-300. The non-stop early afternoon ABZ-BRS-ABZ operated by an Eastern Jetstream also continues into the winter on selected days each week.

The BRS-LBA section was always bookable of course as an Air Southwest flight in that airline's booking engine even though the same aircraft operated onto ABZ in the Eastern booking section. This always seemed complicated to me and likely to confuse some passengers. Why didn't they show BRS-LBA-ABZ as being bookable in both the ASW and Eastern booking engines? I suppose it was to do with route licences.
 

alphagolf

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Leeds Bradford is now bookable through the eastern airways website and from the 3rd October becomes 3 x daily on Monday to Friday and 1 x Sunday.

Monday to Friday

Dep BRS to LBA/ABZ:
06.45
12.05
17.15

Arr BRS from ABZ/LBA:
09.25
14.00
19.45

Sunday:

Arr BRS from ABZ/LBA:
18.15

Dep BRS to LBA/ABZ:
18.35

All Mon to Fri flights operated by a Dash 8-300, which overnights at Bristol and the Sunday flight is operated by a Saab 2000.

alphagolf
 

TheLocalYokel

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Bristol-Aberdeen

The direct lunchtime/early afternoon rotation that operates 3 x weekly on weekdays with the Jetstream 41 has been using one of the Air Southwest Dash 8-300s on a number of occasions that I've witnessed in recent weeks.

It may be a permanent move in anticipation of the forthcoming 5 x weekly lunchtime service to/from ABZ via LBA that will use the Dash 8s on all 3 daily rotations between BRS, LBA and ABZ.
 

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Re previous post, last Tuesday the early afternoon ABZ-BRS-ABZ was back to a Jetstream41. I saw it heading into the airport.
 

big g

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The last NQY flight left last night (30th sep) and the Fire section gave the aircraft a water salute, a nice touch i thought.

The Easton crew room is now up and running ready for the first flight on the 2nd Oct.
 

big g

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G-WOWA is now in Easton Colours and started flying again today, but were yet to see her in BRS.

WB will be next up for maintenance and re-painting, WE leaving the fleet early in the new year.
 

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big g said:
G-WOWA is now in Easton Colours and started flying again today, but were yet to see her in BRS.

WB will be next up for maintenance and re-painting, WE leaving the fleet early in the new year.
As nice as the Air Southwest colour scheme was, I do look forward to seeing the Dash in Eastern Airways colours.
 

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[textarea]Private charter service takes off at Bristol Airport


Regional airline Eastern Airways is targeting corporate customers such as international companies, sports teams, the music industry and private clients with a new range of private charter services from Bristol Airport.

The airline, which has operated from the airport for eight years, is offering the premium services in the 29-50 passenger market to businesses and organisations needing flexible flights to UK and European destinations.

Services range from the platinum premier level to gold and silver with cabin crew specifically trained in the hospitality sector with language options including English, French, Italian, Spanish, German and Polish.

A new cabin crew uniform has been introduced for private charter services to differentiate them from Eastern Airways’ scheduled services.

Onboard services, including food and drink, can be tailored to suit individual client’s needs.

Commercial director Kay Ryan said: “We have significantly grown our charter business over the past two years and the launch of our new charter product further demonstrates our attention to detail and customised levels of service to meet the requirements of our clients.

“The bespoke charter services we offer will appeal to a whole host of existing and potential customers.”

Humberside-based Eastern has for many years flown charter services for businesses in the oil and gas industry to site locations or connecting with offshore helicopters.

The airline’s charter services uses three fast Embraer jets, which are heavily in demand, along with a 50-seater Saab 2000 turboprop which can operate to restricted short runways.

Eastern, the UK’s second-largest regional airline, was recently named Best Passenger Charter Airline at the Baltic Air Charter Association (BACA) excellence awards.

It operates daily scheduled services from Bristol to Leeds-Bradford and Aberdeen.[/textarea]

http://swindon-business.net/index.php/2 ... l-airport/

This appears to be a lift from an Eastern press release so I've reproduced it in full with a link.

It's geared towards BRS because the organ is relatively local (Swindon) but it obviously applies to any airport.

Eastern Dash 8-300s are sometimes used for football and rugby club team charters at weekends in the Severnside region, mainly for South Wales teams, and the movements section on a South Wales aviation group's website suggests they are mainly BRS-based aircraft.
 

big g

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Easton will be retiring the 2 Dashes soon, WA to leave 1st March and WB 1st April.
A Sabb will be based at BRS from 1st March.
 

TheLocalYokel

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Thanks for that, big g.

End of an era with the Dash 8-300 going from BRS.

In the Brymon and BACx days it was the mainstay of the domestic network at BRS.

Flybe in its Jersey European days used them extensively too as did Sabena before they upgraded to the ARJ.
 

TheLocalYokel

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Carrying on from the previous post the timetable for the summer has changed:

Dep BRS 0640 Arr ABZ 0855 via LBA 0735 - Saab 2000

Dep BRS 0955 Arr ABZ 1230 via LBA 1105 - Jetstream 41

Dep BRS 1530 Arr ABZ 1745 via LBA 1625 - Saab 2000

Dep ABZ 0650 Arr BRS 0925 via LBA 0815 - Jetstream 41

Dep ABZ 1150 Arr BRS 1405 via LBA 1310 - Saab 2000

Dep ABZ 1815 Arr BRS 2030 via LBA 1935 - Saab 2000

So the BRS-based Saab does two complete rotations and the Jetstream (presumably ABZ-based) does one.
 

Aviador

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It will be good to see the Saab 2000 on the route more often this summer as opposed to the less favourable Jetstream 41.
 

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