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Prestwick Airport Parking Information

Prestwick Airport Parking

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Prestwick airport history

The airport began life around 1934 primarily as a training airfield with a hangar, offices and control tower being in place by the end of 1935. The airport's original owners were David Fowler McIntyre, who was also the owner of Scottish Aviation with backing from the then Duke of Hamilton. With the onset of World War II, the airport developed rapidly in order to handle the large volume of American aircraft ferry traffic.

In 1938 passenger facilities were added, which were used continuously until the implementation of a massive investment programme to make Prestwick compatible with the new jet transports which were becoming available. A runway extension, parallel taxiway, link road, and an all-new terminal building were opened by the Queen Mother in 1964. The new construction had caused considerable disruption to road users, so much so that during the lengthening of the main runway, the main road into Ayr actually crossed the tarmac. This had to be strictly controlled by a "level crossing" type system until the new perimeter road was completed.

The US Air Force had opened a base in 1953 on the Monkton side of the airport, used by the Military Air Transportation Service (MATS). This base closed in 1966, part of the site is occupied by RNAS Prestwick, more popularly known as HMS Gannet, from whence a detachment of No. 771 Naval Air Squadron Sea Kings provide a Search and Rescue service.

There had been proposed plans drawn up pre-war for the post war years which would have been classed as extremely ambitious, especially in the austere post-war years. Among the various proposals was a 4 mile long main runway, an integral freight yard and railway station, and a semi enclosed mooring for flying boats and other amphibious aircraft. However, the runway was never lengthened to that degree, and the decline in seaplane and flying boat operations also meant that the latter proposal was never enacted. It is telling however, that many years since those proposals were made, that Prestwick Airport does have its own railway station, something that even Glasgow Airport does not have.

Scottish Aviation built a factory using the original terminal building and hangars at Prestwick, which produced such aircraft as the Prestwick Pioneers, and later the Jetstream and Bulldog. One part of the factory, the large white art-deco building which remains to this day, had in fact been the Palace of Engineering that had been built as part of the Empire Exhibition at Bellahouston Park in Glasgow in 1938. When Scottish Aviation merged with British Aerospace as a result of the Aircraft and Shipbuilding Industries Act, BAe maintained aircraft production at the site until 1998, primarily updates of the Jetstream line. Today BAE Systems retains a small facility at Prestwick for its Regional Aircraft division, with the adjoining main manufacturing site, producing components for Airbus and Boeing aircraft, having been sold to Spirit AeroSystems in January 2006.

In the beginning, Prestwick was the only Scottish airport allowed to operate a transatlantic link, largely due to the very benign weather conditions on the Ayrshire coast. Indeed, with a much lower incidence of fog than any other airport in Great Britain due to a geological anomaly[citation needed], Prestwick is the only guaranteed fog-free airport in the UK. This is perhaps one reason it managed to avoid total closure when it appeared that BAA seemed to be running down operations. It was also partly a political decision to silence those that questioned why Glasgow needed two airports when Glasgow Corporation had already invested money building Glasgow Airport.

Although British Airways had ceased regular passenger operations in the late 1970s which some people saw as the beginning of the end for the airport, BA continued to intermittently use Prestwick as a site for pilot training, especially for training Concorde pilots. Concorde became a semi-regular visitor to the airport, and indeed BA and a number of other major airlines still use Prestwick for pilot training.

Prestwick Airport is also famous because it is the only piece of United Kingdom territory that Elvis Presley set foot on, when his US Army transport plane stopped to refuel in 1960, whilst en route from Germany.

Prestwick Airport also used to host a bi-annual airshow, the first of which was held on 30 September 1967. While very small in scale compared to such shows as RAF Fairford or Farnborough, the air show was a local attraction and drew a considerable crowd. There were constant rumours in later years that the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird reconnaisance aircraft would make an appearance, but this came to nothing, most likely due to difficulties associated with handling the special fuel. The last air show was in 1992 and there have been no efforts at reviving it since.

In 1991 the newly-privatised British Airports Authority, BAA plc consolidated their portfolio of UK airports. Part of this was to move all transatlantic traffic departing from Scotland to Glasgow Airport, near Paisley, and sell Prestwick off to the private sector. In the early-to-mid 1990s passenger figures fell sharply with only freight traffic and a small number of charter flights using Prestwick on a regular basis. At this point the airport faced an uncertain future.

1994 marked the beginning of a renaissance for the struggling airport. It took the shrewd move of building its own railway station on the existing Glasgow-Ayr line, which runs straight past the airfield. Then, Irish budget line Ryanair opened a route to the airport from Dublin. This led to another route to London the following year. The resulting rapid growth of European no-frills airlines in the late 1990s has seen Prestwick grow even larger than it had ever been in traffic terms under state ownership. Ryanair now serves 20 destinations from Prestwick now one of their maintenance hubs and other budget airlines have also moved into the airport.

Today, as well as the thriving no-frills segment, Prestwick has continued its traditional strategic role as a refuelling point for military aircraft the US Air Force, RAF and the Canadian Armed Forces are frequent visitors for example. Cargo traffic has also become another stronghold of Prestwick with the vast majority of Scotland's Boeing 747 Freighter traffic entering via the airport.

The airport is privately owned by Infratil, a New Zealand investment company which also owns Wellington International Airport. In April 2005, Infratil completed a major 3m refurbishment of the terminal building, and also controversially rebranded the airport using the phrase "Pure Dead Brilliant", taken straight from the Glasgow Patter. Some of this rebranding has been controversial, in particular the redecoration of the airport bar. The bar was rebranded in February 2006 with a logo depicting a man in a kilt, unconscious with an empty bottle of whisky. Despite objections that it promoted the wrong image of Scotland to foreign visitors and embarrassed local travellers, the airport management insisted the logo was "fun and visually stimulating". However, the logo was removed on 3 March 2006, only several weeks after its introduction, after the intervention of the South Ayrshire Licencing Board who said the logo trivialised excessive drinking.

On 6 July 2005, Prestwick Airport became the entry point into Scotland for the world's most powerful leaders on the eve of the G8 Summit which was being held in Gleneagles. Strathclyde Police implemented an unprecedented level of security around the airport for the duration of the summit. Officers from police forces throughout the UK were drafted in to assist in the operation, including armed officers. In preparation for the landing of Air Force One, carrying US president George W Bush, the A77, which runs past the end of the main runway, was controversially closed while the aircraft was on final approach.

This history article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Prestwick Airport".

We have the following prestwick airport parking available :

Glasgow Prestwick Car Park 3 (Mid Stay)
Glasgow Prestwick Car Park 4 (Mid Stay)
Glasgow Prestwick Car Park 5 (Long Stay)
Watsons Ayr Park

Click, to view our customer reviews of prestwick airport parking.

Click, to visit our prestwick guide.

Prestwick Airport Parking - Glasgow Prestwick Car Park 3 (Mid Stay)
AddressGlasgow Prestwick Car Park 3,
Glasgow Prestwick Airport,
Aviation House,
Prestwick,
Scotland,
KA9 2PL
MapClick Here for Map
Postcode for Sat NavKA9 2PL
Transfer Timeon-site
Frequency of Transferon-site
Transfer ProcedureThe car park is within walking distance of the terminal.
DirectionsSee booking confirmation for full list of directions to car park.
Departure ProcedureFor car park 3, hand voucher to attendant at exit.
Arrival Procedure Drop passengers and luggage off at the terminal, take ticket at entry barrier and park car.
SecurityThe car park is manned 24 hours. There is full CCTV and patrols.
Prestwick Airport Parking - Glasgow Prestwick Car Park 4 (Mid Stay)
AddressGlasgow Prestwick Car Park 4,
Glasgow Prestwick Airport,
Aviation House,
Prestwick,
Scotland,
KA9 2PL
MapClick Here for Map
Postcode for Sat NavKA9 2PL
Transfer Time5 minutes
Frequency of Transfer10
Transfer ProcedureRuns every 10 minutes. If the bus is not present, the car park attendant will it.
DirectionsSee booking confirmation for full list of directions to car park. Glasgow Prestwick Airport is on the A79, 30 miles southwest of Glasgow city centre and is reached via the M77/A77/A79.
Departure ProcedureUpon collection of your vehicle, present your confirmation to the attendant at the exit barrier.
Arrival Procedure Drop passengers and luggage off at the terminal, show confirmation to attendant and park car.
SecurityThe car park is manned 24 hours. There is full CCTV and patrols.
Prestwick Airport Parking - Glasgow Prestwick Car Park 5 (Long Stay)
AddressGlasgow Prestwick Car Park 5,
Glasgow Prestwick Airport,
Aviation House,
Prestwick,
Scotland,
KA9 2PL
MapClick Here for Map
Postcode for Sat NavKA9 2PL
Transfer Time10 minutes
Frequency of Transfer20
Transfer ProcedureGo to courtesy bus pick up point. The bus operates every 20 minutes on a 24 hour basis.
DirectionsSee booking confirmation for full list of directions to car park. Glasgow Prestwick Airport is on the A79, 30 miles southwest of Glasgow city centre and is reached via the M77/A77/A79.
Departure ProcedureTake courtesy bus back to car park 5. Collect car and present voucher to attendant at the exit barrier.
Arrival Procedure On entry show confirmation to the attendant. Return to courtesy bus area and attendant will call bus if its not there.
SecurityThe car park is manned 24 hours, 7 days a week.
Prestwick Airport Parking - Watsons Ayr Park
AddressWatson's Ayr Park,
Tarbolton Road,
Monkton,
Prestwick,
Ayrshire,
KA9 2RW
Postcode for Sat NavKA9 2RW
Transfer Time About 1 mile away, takes 3 minutes to transfer.
Transfer Time5 minutes
Frequency of TransferD
Transfer ProcedureA courtesy bus service runs between car park and terminal. It operates on demand, on a 24 hour basis
Departure ProcedureCall 01292 471111 from the airport to request a transfer. Your car will be waiting for collection at the reception.
Arrival Procedure Head to the car park reception and hand over your parking confirmation. Your car is then parked for you and the transfer to the airport is provided.
SecurityCCTV, floodlights, perimeter fencing, security guards.
Disabled FacilitiesNone.
Undercover Parking Not available.
Trailer FacilitiesNot accepted.
Please note this section is intended as a guide to prestwick airport parking, full details of your prestwick airport parking are provided for with your booking.
 
 
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