The June Issue

Bids in play to return gliding to airfield

Seven separate applicants have expressed an interest in re-establishing a gliding-related  business at Omarama Airfield ahead of the upcoming season.
Last month, the Omarama Airfield Company invited gliding operators who wanted to set up a commercial gliding operation at the airfield to apply for a licence to operate.
Glide Omarama ceased operations in early March because of a licensing dispute with the Civil Aviation Authority. And since that time restrictions to prevent the spread of Covid-19 have put a stop to resumption of activity.
    Omarama Airfield Company chairperson Clive Geddes said the company had received seven separate applications for a variety of gliding and gliding-related operations to begin September 1.  The company was actively working with the applicants, he said. Given the circumstances it was acutely aware of the need to obtain “some certainty” for the operation, the applicants and the community. The company was in discussion with some of the parties already and hoped to have a decision by the end of this month, Mr Geddes said. It was hoped this would give all parties the necessary lead time to prepare for the season ahead, “whatever the nature of the economy maybe in the coming year”. Last month, Mr Geddes said it had “circulated’ the call for expressions of interest through Gliding New Zealand channels and to “two or three parties overseas” who had shown interest and previously had a “long-term summer presence” in Omarama.  As well, Glide Omarama had been kept “fully informed” of progress and were welcome to submit an application. >>> continue reading <<<


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