1 February 2024
Bicester Motion, the company behind the classic car centre at Bicester Aerodrome, has asked all pilots with aircraft based in the 98-year-old listed hangar to move out by 30 June 2024.
FLYER understands that the building is to be restored then reconfigured for a future tenant, possibly an indoor karting track.
Philip White, an Associate Director at Bicester Motion, said, “As you will know, we have been regularly maintaining the unrestored ‘Type A’ Hangar since we took it over in 2013.
“However, having been built in 1926, its age has caught up with it.
“After much soul searching, and out of concern for its natural deterioration, we are exploring a full restoration of its external fabric in readiness for its centenary.
“Meanwhile, it seems prudent to vacate it owing to its condition, various surveys required and to get the restoration project planned.
“As such, The Bicester Aerodrome Company has requested that aircraft storage in this hangar come to an end this summer, giving plenty of notice for alternative accommodation to be found.
“We are pleased to confirm that aviation continues at Bicester Motion, with the runways and airfield operating as normal in the hands of the Bicester Aerodrome Company.”
A karting company called Team Sport tried and failed to establish an indoor racetrack in Bicester, on a nearby industrial estate, back in 2019.
Bicester Aerodrome dates back before WWI when a Bristol Boxkite landed there in 1911. In 1916 it became the flying field for the Royal Flying Corps and RAF Bicester was constructed in 1926.
The airfield is a Scheduled Monument. Historic England says, “RAF Bicester… retains, better than any other military airbase in Britain, the layout and fabric relating to both pre-1930s military aviation and the development of Britain’s strategic bomber force in the period up to 1939.
“The grass flying field still survives with its 1939 boundaries largely intact, bounded by a group of bomb stores built in 1928-1929 and airfield defences built in the early stages of the war. The remains included in the scheduling are, along with the listed hangars and other listed buildings, the key structures within this military landscape.”
The Bicester Aerodrome website says, “Our role is to ensure that diverse aviation activity continues to take flight into the future from our historic location.”