Edinburgh Airport
Edinburgh Airport is located at Turnhouse
Turnhouse is a suburb in the west of Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland.The area is east of Edinburgh International Airport, and Turnhouse is also the name for the former Royal Air Force base, now closed, which dates back to the First World War and was the origin of the current civilian airport...

 in the City of Edinburgh
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland, the second largest city in Scotland, and the eighth most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Edinburgh Council governs one of Scotland's 32 local government council areas. The council area includes urban Edinburgh and a rural area...

, Scotland
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Occupying the northern third of the island of Great Britain, it shares a border with England to the south and is bounded by the North Sea to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the...

, and was the busiest airport
An airport is a location where aircraft such as fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters, and blimps take off and land. Aircraft may be stored or maintained at an airport...

 in Scotland in 2010, handling just under 8.6 million passengers in that year. It was also the sixth busiest airport
Busiest airports in the United Kingdom by total passenger traffic
The tables below contain CAA data from 2006 to 2009, on the busiest airports in the United Kingdom by total passenger traffic, including information on international, domestic and transit counterparts...

 in the UK
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 by passengers and the fifth busiest by aircraft movements. It is located 5 NM west of the city centre and is situated just off the M8 motorway.

The airport is owned and operated by BAA, which also owns and operates five other UK airports, and is itself owned by ADI Limited, an international consortium, which includes Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec
Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec
The Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec manages public pension plans in the Canadian province of Quebec. It was founded in 1965 by an act of the National Assembly...

 and GIC Special Investments
Government of Singapore Investment Corporation
The Government of Singapore Investment Corporation Private Limited is a sovereign wealth fund established by the Government of Singapore in 1981 to manage Singapore's foreign reserves...

, that is led by the Spanish
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 Ferrovial Group
Ferrovial, S.A. is a Spanish multinational company involved in the design, build, financing, operation and maintenance of transport, urban and services infrastructure. It is a publicly-traded company and is part of the IBEX 35 market value-weighted stock market index...


The present terminal building, designed by Robert Matthew
Robert Matthew
Sir Robert Hogg Matthew, OBE, FRIBA was a Scottish architect and a leading proponent of modernism.- Early life & studies :Robert Matthew was the son of John Matthew . He was born and brought up in Edinburgh, and attended the Edinburgh College of Art.- Career :Robert was apprenticed with his...

, was constructed in 1977 and has been upgraded in recent years, with new car parking facilities and an extended arrivals hall. A new control tower
Air traffic control
Air traffic control is a service provided by ground-based controllers who direct aircraft on the ground and in the air. The primary purpose of ATC systems worldwide is to separate aircraft to prevent collisions, to organize and expedite the flow of traffic, and to provide information and other...

 was completed in 2005.

There are plans for expansion of the airport, with passenger numbers expected to reach 26 million per annum by 2030.

On 19th October 2011, BAA Limited announced that it intends to sell Edinburgh Airport, following a decision by the UK's Competition Commission requiring BAA to sell either Glasgow
Glasgow International Airport
Glasgow International Airport is an international airport in Scotland, located west of Glasgow city centre, near the towns of Paisley and Renfrew in Renfrewshire...

 or Edinburgh Airport.


Turnhouse Aerodrome was the most northerly British air defence base in World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 used by the Royal Flying Corps
Royal Flying Corps
The Royal Flying Corps was the over-land air arm of the British military during most of the First World War. During the early part of the war, the RFC's responsibilities were centred on support of the British Army, via artillery co-operation and photographic reconnaissance...

. The small base opened in 1915 and it was used to house the 603 (City of Edinburgh) Squadron
No. 603 Squadron RAF
No. 603 Squadron is a squadron of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. The primary role of 603 Squadron, since reforming on 1 October 1999, has been as a Survive to Operate squadron, as well as providing Force Protection.-Formation and early years:No...

 from 1925, which consisted of DH 9As
Airco DH.9
The Airco DH.9 - also known after 1920 as the de Havilland DH.9 - was a British bomber used in the First World War...

, Westland Wapiti
Westland Wapiti
The Westland Wapiti was a British two-seat general purpose military single-engined biplane of the 1920s. It was designed and built by Westland Aircraft Works to replace the Airco DH.9A in Royal Air Force service....

s, Hawker Hart
Hawker Hart
The Hawker Hart was a British two-seater biplane light bomber of the Royal Air Force , which had a prominent role during the RAF's inter-war period. The Hart was designed during the 1920s by Sydney Camm and built by Hawker Aircraft...

s, and Hawker Hind
Hawker Hind
-See also:-Bibliography:* Crawford, Alex. Hawker Hart Family. Redbourn, Hertfordshire, UK: Mushroom Model Publications Ltd., 2008. ISBN 83-89450-62-3....

 light bombers. All the aircraft used a grass air strip.

In 1918 the Royal Air Force was formed and the airfield was named RAF Turnhouse and ownership transferred to the Ministry of Defence
Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom)
The Ministry of Defence is the United Kingdom government department responsible for implementation of government defence policy and is the headquarters of the British Armed Forces....


When the Second World War broke out, RAF Fighter Command
RAF Fighter Command
RAF Fighter Command was one of three functional commands of the Royal Air Force. It was formed in 1936 to allow more specialised control of fighter aircraft. It served throughout the Second World War, gaining recognition in the Battle of Britain. The Command continued until 17 November 1943, when...

 took control over the airfield and a runway of 3900 ft (1,189 m) was paved to handle the Vickers Supermarine Spitfire
Supermarine Spitfire
The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft that was used by the Royal Air Force and many other Allied countries throughout the Second World War. The Spitfire continued to be used as a front line fighter and in secondary roles into the 1950s...

. During the Battle of Britain
Battle of Britain
The Battle of Britain is the name given to the World War II air campaign waged by the German Air Force against the United Kingdom during the summer and autumn of 1940...

, Nos 3
No. 3 Squadron RAF
No 3 Squadron of the Royal Air Force operates the Typhoon F2, FGR4 and T3 from RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire.No 3 Squadron, which celebrated its 95th anniversary over the weekend of 11-13 May 2007, is unique in the RAF for having two official crests....

, 65
No. 65 Squadron RAF
No. 65 Squadron was a squadron of the Royal Air Force.-World War I:The squadron was first formed at Wyton on 1 August 1916 as a squadron of the Royal Flying Corps with a core provided from the training ground at Norwich. By the end of World War I, it had claimed over 200 victories...

, and 141
No. 141 Squadron RAF
No. 141 Squadron of the Royal Air Force was formed on 1 January 1918 at Rochford, for home defence in the London Area. The Squadron moved to RAF Biggin Hill in February and giving up its mixed collection of types in favour of Bristol F.2 Fighters during March...

 Squadrons were present at the airbase.

When the war ended the airfield still remained under military control, but by the late 1940s the first commercial services were launched. In 1947, British European Airways
British European Airways
British European Airways or British European Airways Corporation was a British airline which existed from 1946 until 1974. The airline operated European and North African routes from airports around the United Kingdom...

 started a service between Edinburgh and London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 using Vickers Viking
Vickers Viking
-References:NotesBibliography* Andrews, C.F. and E.B. Morgan. Vickers Aircraft since 1908. London: Putnam, 1988. ISBN 0-85177-815-1.* London, Peter. British Flying Boats. Stroud, UK: Sutton Publishing, 2003. ISBN 0-7509-2695-3....

s followed by the Viscount
Vickers Viscount
The Vickers Viscount was a British medium-range turboprop airliner first flown in 1948 by Vickers-Armstrongs, making it the first such aircraft to enter service in the world...

 and Vanguard
Vickers Vanguard
The Vickers Type 950 Vanguard was a British short/medium-range turboprop airliner introduced in 1959 by Vickers-Armstrongs, a development of their successful Viscount design with considerably more internal room. The Vanguard was introduced just before the first of the large jet-powered airliners,...


In 1952 the runway was extended to 6000 ft to handle the Vampire FB5
De Havilland Vampire
The de Havilland DH.100 Vampire was a British jet-engine fighter commissioned by the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. Following the Gloster Meteor, it was the second jet fighter to enter service with the RAF. Although it arrived too late to see combat during the war, the Vampire served...

s; and an aircraft carrier Catcher Net (never used) to protect traffic on the adjacent A9 road. In 1956 a new passenger terminal was built to offer improved commercial service and five years later it was extended. The Ministry of Defence transferred ownership to the Ministry of Aviation
Ministry of Aviation
Ministry of Aviation was a department of the United Kingdom government, established in 1959. Its responsibilities included the regulation of civil aviation and the supply of military aircraft, which it took on from the Ministry of Supply....

 in 1960 to offer improved commercial service to the airport. Flying was temporarily diverted to East Fortune, which had its runway extended to accommodate the airliners of the period. In 1971 the British Airports Authority took over the airport and immediately started to expand it by constructing a new runway and terminal building.

Although the original main runway 13/31 (which is now 12/30) served the airport well, its alignment had the disadvantage of suffering from severe crosswinds and the other two minor runways were very short and could not be readily extended, so movements were transferred to a new runway (07/25 which has since become 06/24) in an addition completely outside the original airfield boundary. This runway, completed in 1977 is 2556 m (8,386 ft) in length, and was able to take all modern airliners including Concorde. A new terminal was built alongside the runway to cater for the additional traffic. The old terminal and hangars were converted into a cargo centre.

The only international services from Edinburgh during the 1980s were to Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the largest city and the capital of the Netherlands. The current position of Amsterdam as capital city of the Kingdom of the Netherlands is governed by the constitution of August 24, 1815 and its successors. Amsterdam has a population of 783,364 within city limits, an urban population...

 and Dublin, but in the following years links were opened to destinations in France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 and Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

. By the end of the decade BAA had been privatised and funds were used to extend the current terminal building and create parking aprons.

In 2005, a new 57 m (187 ft) tall air traffic control tower was completed at a cost of £10m (€16m).

An extension to the terminal opened in September 2006 called the "South East Pier". This extension initially added six gates on a new pier to the South-East of the original building. A further four gates were added to the South East Pier at the end of 2008.

Airlines and destinations

Cargo airlines

Passenger numbers

Passenger traffic at Edinburgh Airport increased each year between 1997 and 2007, after which numbers stabilised before dropping by 5.0% in 2010 to 8,596,715 with 108,997 aircraft movements recorded.
Number of Movements Freight
1997 4,214,919 99,352 27,548
1998 4,588,507 100,134 23,260
1999 5,119,258 101,226 17,715
2000 5,519,372 102,393 17,894
2001 6,067,333 112,361 16,169
2002 6,930,649 118,416 21,232
2003 7,481,454 118,943 24,761
2004 8,017,547 125,317 27,376
2005 8,456,739 127,122 29,595
2006 8,611,345 126,914 36,389
2007 9,047,558 128,172 19,292
2008 9,006,702 125,550 12,418
2009 9,049,355 115,969 23,791
2010 8,596,715 108,997 20,357
Source: United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority

Busiest routes

20 busiest routes to and from Edinburgh Airport (2010)
Rank Airport Passengers handled % Change
2009 / 10
1 London Heathrow
London Heathrow Airport
London Heathrow Airport or Heathrow , in the London Borough of Hillingdon, is the busiest airport in the United Kingdom and the third busiest airport in the world in terms of total passenger traffic, handling more international passengers than any other airport around the globe...

1,244,793 4.7
2 London Gatwick
London Gatwick Airport
Gatwick Airport is located 3.1 miles north of the centre of Crawley, West Sussex, and south of Central London. Previously known as London Gatwick,In 2010, the name changed from London Gatwick Airport to Gatwick Airport...

604,073 6.8
3 Amsterdam 494,852 9.3
4 Dublin
Dublin Airport
Dublin Airport, , is operated by the Dublin Airport Authority. Located in Collinstown, in the Fingal part of County Dublin, 18.4 million passengers passed through the airport in 2010, making it the busiest airport in the Republic of Ireland, followed by Cork and Shannon...

376,692 15.3
5 London City
London City Airport
London City Airport is a single-runway airport. It principally serves the financial district of London and is located on a former Docklands site, east of the City of London, opposite the London Regatta Centre, in the London Borough of Newham in east London. It was developed by the engineering...

334,751 2.5
6 London Stansted
London Stansted Airport
-Cargo:-Statistics:-Infrastructure:-Terminal and satellite buildings:Stansted is the newest passenger airport of all the main London airports. The terminal is an oblong glass building, and is separated in to three areas: Check-in concourse, arrivals and departures...

329,933 11.7
7 Birmingham 288,035 14.3
8 Paris Charles de Gaulle 269,192 3.6
9 London Luton
London Luton Airport
London Luton Airport is an international airport located east of the town centre in the Borough of Luton in Bedfordshire, England and is north of Central London. The airport is from Junction 10a of the M1 motorway...

242,041 23.3
10 Bristol
Bristol Airport
Bristol Airport may refer to:* Bristol Airport, serving Bristol, England, United Kingdom ** Bristol Airport , a docu-soap based on events at Bristol Airport...

227,031 3.5
11 Belfast International
Belfast International Airport
Belfast International Airport is a major airport located northwest of Belfast in Northern Ireland. It was formerly known and is still referred to as Aldergrove Airport, after the village of the same name lying immediately to the west of the airport. Belfast International shares its runways with...

219,669 5.4
12 Southampton
Southampton Airport
Southampton Airport is the 20th largest airport in the UK, located north north-east of Southampton, in the Borough of Eastleigh within Hampshire, England....

193,994 1.3
13   Newark
Newark Liberty International Airport
Newark Liberty International Airport , first named Newark Metropolitan Airport and later Newark International Airport, is an international airport within the city limits of both Newark and Elizabeth, New Jersey, United States...

159,740 4.5
14 Manchester 126,653 20.0
15 Frankfurt
Frankfurt Airport
Frankfurt Airport may refer to:Airports of Frankfurt, Germany:*Frankfurt Airport , the largest airport in Germany*Frankfurt Egelsbach Airport, a general aviation airport*Frankfurt-Hahn Airport , a converted U.S...

118,284 12.3
16 Geneva 117,665 1.6
17 Belfast City
George Best Belfast City Airport
George Best Belfast City Airport is a single-runway airport in Belfast, County Antrim, Northern Ireland. Situated adjacent to the Port of Belfast it is from Belfast City Centre. It shares the site with the Short Brothers/Bombardier aircraft manufacturing facility...

111,517 6.6
18 Cardiff 111,456 30.8
19 East Midlands 108,700 16.5
20 Madrid 107,994 8.6

Short range routes make up a significant proportion of flights at Edinburgh, data from the CAA shows that over 55% of passengers passing through the airport in 2010 travelled on flights within the UK and Ireland.

Access and ground transportation

The airport lies on the A8 Glasgow-Edinburgh road, and can be easily reached by the M8 (from Glasgow
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the River Clyde in the country's west central lowlands...

) and the
M9 (from Stirling
Stirling is a city and former ancient burgh in Scotland, and is at the heart of the wider Stirling council area. The city is clustered around a large fortress and medieval old-town beside the River Forth...

). The airport is also within easy access from the M90 motorway
M90 motorway
The M90 is a motorway in Scotland. It runs from Inverkeithing, at the north end of the Forth Road Bridge, to Perth, passing Dunfermline, Cowdenbeath and Kinross on the way...

 (from Perth
Perth, Scotland
Perth is a town and former city and royal burgh in central Scotland. Located on the banks of the River Tay, it is the administrative centre of Perth and Kinross council area and the historic county town of Perthshire...

) via the Forth Road Bridge
Forth Road Bridge
The Forth Road Bridge is a suspension bridge in east central Scotland. The bridge, opened in 1964, spans the Firth of Forth, connecting the capital city Edinburgh, at South Queensferry, to Fife, at North Queensferry...


Lothian Buses provide public transportation to the airport with the Airlink 100 express bus from Edinburgh city centre, as well as local bus services. Additionally, Stagecoach
Stagecoach Group
Stagecoach Group plc is an international transport group operating buses, trains, trams, express coaches and ferries. The group was founded in 1980 by the current chairman, Sir Brian Souter, his sister, Ann Gloag, and her former husband Robin...

 operates the newly formed JET express bus service, previously AirDirect 747 between the airport and Inverkeithing railway station
Inverkeithing railway station
Inverkeithing railway station serves the town of Inverkeithing in Fife, Scotland. The station is managed by First ScotRail and is on the Fife Circle Line 21 km north west of Edinburgh Waverley....

 and Ferrytoll Park and Ride in Fife, and the Gyle Shopping Centre and Heriot-Watt University
Heriot-Watt University
Heriot-Watt University is a university based in Edinburgh, Scotland. The name commemorates George Heriot, the 16th century financier to King James, and James Watt, the great 18th century inventor and engineer....


There are currently no direct rail links to Edinburgh Airport, although it lies very close to the Fife Circle
Fife Circle Line
The Fife Circle is the local rail service north from Edinburgh. It links all the towns of south Fife and the coastal towns along the Firth of Forth before heading to Edinburgh.-Service:...

 and the Edinburgh-Glasgow
Glasgow to Edinburgh via Falkirk Line
The Glasgow to Edinburgh via Falkirk Line is a mainline railway line linking Glasgow and Edinburgh via Falkirk in Scotland. It is the principal route out of the four rail links between Scotland's two biggest cities, hosting the flagship "Shuttle" service between and .- Places served :The route...

 railway lines. A project to build the Edinburgh Airport Rail Link was cancelled in 2007 after a change in Government.

Transport links

Work is underway to construct a light rail
Light rail
Light rail or light rail transit is a form of urban rail public transportation that generally has a lower capacity and lower speed than heavy rail and metro systems, but higher capacity and higher speed than traditional street-running tram systems...

 link from the airport to Edinburgh city centre on the Edinburgh Trams network. The new system will run from an airport station
Edinburgh Airport tram stop
Edinburgh Airport tram stop is a new tram stop currently under construction by Edinburgh Trams. It will be on Line 1-Stop Information:The Airport station will be located on Burnside Road, near the airport terminal. The station will be a terminus station....

 across the western suburbs of Edinburgh on a segregated track; when the trams reach Haymarket railway station
Haymarket railway station
For the Tyne and Wear Metro see Haymarket Metro station.Haymarket railway station is in Haymarket, Edinburgh, Scotland. It is Edinburgh's second largest station after Waverley, a major commuter and long-distance destination, located quite centrally near the West End...

 they will switch to street-running mode and travel through the city along Princes Street
Princes Street
Princes Street is one of the major thoroughfares in central Edinburgh, Scotland, UK, and its main shopping street. It is the southernmost street of Edinburgh's New Town, stretching around 1 mile from Lothian Road in the west to Leith Street in the east. The street is mostly closed to private...

. Edinburgh Trams are expected to begin operation around 2011 or 2012.

As a cheaper alternative to the cancelled Edinburgh Airport Rail Link project, it has been proposed that an additional interchange station be constructed on the Fife Circle Line. Gogar railway station
Gogar railway station
Gogar station is a planned railway station and interchange at Gogar in Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom. It is to be served by First ScotRail and Edinburgh Trams.Current proposals are to call the rail station and tram stop Edinburgh Gateway....

 would provide interchange with airport tram services. This proposal has not yet been approved or funded.


In April, 2008 work began on the resurfacing of the main runway. This project, at a cost of £16m, was due to be completed by the end of November, 2008 and will prolong the life of the runway for a further 15 years. In the end, the work was completed around 10 days ahead of schedule and on budget.

A £40m extension to the departure lounge has been built, work commenced in December, 2008.

£250m is to be spent on the airport over the next decade. BAA has made provision in its Master Plan for the airport for an extension to the current runway 06/24, which would allow larger aircraft to serve longer haul destinations. There are plans to expand further by adding a new runway and terminal by 2020 which would accommodate up to 20 million passengers per annum. BAA projects that by 2030 Edinburgh Airport will be handling 26 million passengers per annum. Development has recently begun at Edinburgh Airport on a £40 million departure lounge extension project which will see the current lounge double in size as well as a new security search area and a greater choice bars, restaurants and shops. The departure lounge opened on 18/11/09.

The likelihood of an additional runway has been thrown into doubt following a revised masterplan in January 2011, with passenger numbers expected to be lower than previously thought - 12.3 million by 2020 and 20 million by 2040.

Accidents and incidents

On 27 February 2001, a Loganair
Loganair is a Scottish airline with its registered office on the grounds of Glasgow International Airport and in Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland. Loganair operates scheduled services under a Flybe franchise in mainland Scotland and to Orkney, Shetland and the Western Isles. In addition it operates...

 Shorts 360
Shorts 360
The Short 360 is a commuter aircraft built by Short Brothers. The Short 360 seats up to 36-39 passengers and was introduced into service in 1981. It is a larger version of the Short 330.-Development:...

 (G-BNMT) operating a Royal Mail
Royal Mail
Royal Mail is the government-owned postal service in the United Kingdom. Royal Mail Holdings plc owns Royal Mail Group Limited, which in turn operates the brands Royal Mail and Parcelforce Worldwide...

 flight to Belfast
Belfast is the capital of and largest city in Northern Ireland. By population, it is the 14th biggest city in the United Kingdom and second biggest on the island of Ireland . It is the seat of the devolved government and legislative Northern Ireland Assembly...

, crashed into the Firth of Forth
Firth of Forth
The Firth of Forth is the estuary or firth of Scotland's River Forth, where it flows into the North Sea, between Fife to the north, and West Lothian, the City of Edinburgh and East Lothian to the south...

 shortly after taking off from Edinburgh at 1730 GMT. Both crew members were killed, and there were no passengers on board. A fatal accident inquiry later blamed a build up of slush
Slush (snow)
Slush, also called slush ice, is a slurry mixture of small ice crystals and liquid water. In the natural environment, slush forms as ice or snow melts. This often mixes with dirt and other materials, resulting in a gray or muddy brown color...

 in the aircraft's engines before the crash. Protective covering had not been fitted to the engine intakes while the aircraft was parked for several hours in heavy snow
Snow is a form of precipitation within the Earth's atmosphere in the form of crystalline water ice, consisting of a multitude of snowflakes that fall from clouds. Since snow is composed of small ice particles, it is a granular material. It has an open and therefore soft structure, unless packed by...

at Edinburgh.

External links

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