Campaigners still hope to save it
MAY I point out that there were several errors in the "We Say" comment column on February 15. Firstly, Filton Airfield has not been sold. BAE Systems simply say they have entered into a development partnership with Bridgehouse Capital.
Secondly, the airfield is economically viable, it's simply that BAE can make a lot more money selling it for housing. The full financial facts are:
The accounts for BAE Systems (Aviation Services) Ltd, the operating company for the airfield are public documents. For the year ending December 31 2000 they show a turnover of £59,365,000 and a profit of £6,130,000.
However, on April 1 2000 they transferred the assets and liabilities of The Aviation services division of BAE Systems (Operations) Ltd into the company. This company was failing and in due course was shut down. As a result the airfield, BAE Systems (Aviation Services) Ltd, made a loss of £13,522,000 in the year ended 31st December 2001.
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So by moving the losses of a failing company into the airfield company they made the airfield "unprofitable". Despite the fact that they actively forced out companies who wanted to use the airfield it continued to make money until by 2010 it had paid off the losses.
For the year ended December 31 2010 the accounts show profits of £1,294,000. Despite the continuing policy of decline in 2011 the airfield made £517,000 profit.
Finally may I point out that the Save Filton Airfield campaigners have not given up and do have an alternative plan for the airfield.