Change is coming to the London CTR

The airspace around Heathrow Airport – the London CTR control zone – is changing.

From 18 September, it will be reclassified from Class A to Class D airspace, in support of the introduction of SERA – the Standardised European Rules of the Air.

Under SERA, VFR and SVFR flights can no longer be operated in Class A airspace. The change to Class D therefore offers the best balance between enabling access while ensuring a safe and efficient air traffic environment.

The inner and outer area of the new London CTR

The inner and outer area of the new London CTR

What you need to know

1. On 18 September 2014 the London CTR will change from Class A to Class D airspace, matching the other major London airports.

2. You will always need to ask for ATC clearance to enter the control zone.

3. The London CTR is the busiest piece of airspace in the UK. NATS may be able to offer you an ATC traffic service, but it will always be subject to workload and clearance.

4. Access to the airspace immediately around Heathrow Airport – referred to as the ‘Inner Area’ – will be restricted via PPR (Prior Permission Required) by telephone. Unless you really need to fly inside the ‘Inner Area’, you should plan to route around it.

5. The London CTR will be a Transponder Mandatory Zone (TMZ) with Mode S required.

NATS has produced a leaflet and a briefing presentation with speaking notes for General Aviation.

Changes to the UK Integrated Aeronautical Information Package (IAIP) are available to view on the AIS website from 24 July.

Read the original consultation documents


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