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The comings & goings at Birmingham Airport

Birmingham Airport was been named the world’s most punctual airport in 2016.

Birmingham Airport, is the UK's seventh busiest airports, with upto 13 million passengers travelling through yearly, it was formerly called Eldom and opened 8th July 1939 it then changed its name to Birmingham International, an additional terminal building to handle international traffic was opened, called The International Building. Finally the International was dropped and today it's known as Birmingham Airport.

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07 Jun 2019 - On-going

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Transport
23 Jun 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: Thomas Cook Airlines

Another airline popular for holiday destinations was Thomas Cook Airlines. Sadly they went out of business back in September 2019, along with all of their High Street travel shops. Founded in 2007 from a merger with Thomas Cook Group and MyTravel Group. It operated services from Birmingham Airport and other UK based airports. They were known for the yellow heart symbol.

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Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: Thomas Cook Airlines





Another airline popular for holiday destinations was Thomas Cook Airlines. Sadly they went out of business back in September 2019, along with all of their High Street travel shops. Founded in 2007 from a merger with Thomas Cook Group and MyTravel Group. It operated services from Birmingham Airport and other UK based airports. They were known for the yellow heart symbol.


Thomas Cook at Birmingham Airport

Thomas Cook Airlines operated flights from Birmingham Airport for many years. Founded in 2007 from a merger between Thomas Cook Group and MyTravel Group. There main bases was at Manchester Airport and Gatwick Airport . In 2013, Thomas Cook Airlines, Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia and Condor all merged under the name of Thomas Cook Group Airlines.

The airline collapsed in September 2019. Over 165,000 passengers were stranded overseas (more than the 65,000 of Monarch), that had to be flown back to the UK.

While I've seen Thomas Cook at Birmingham Airport, we had never flown with them.

 

One of my first Thomas Cook plane photos was taken while I was on a walk around Erdington. I was on the Chester Road during May 2014. It was probably an Airbus A321-200.

Not a great photo of a Thomas Cook plane, as it was behind trees as it came into land at Birmingham Airport, back in March 2016. But this was on the day of the first Emirates Airbus A380 landing. And I went to the Sheldon Country Park to see it. After I left I went to Marston Green Station, and got this view from the second footbridge before I got to the platform.

The first up and close photo I got of a Thomas Cook plane was at the departures at Birmingham Airport during June 2016. The windows to the gates can be a bit fuzzy to look through. A Shell tanker was near the Airbus A321-200 plane. We were on the way to get a Flybe flight to Milan for the Lake Como holiday.

In December 2016, I saw this Thomas Cook plane taking off from Birmingham Airport, while I was in Car Park 5. There is a plane spotting area there, but if you go further back, you won't have the perimeter fence in the way.

Back in August 2017 I was in Sutton Coldfield on the Big Sleuth bear hunt. While in Boldmere (after leaving Sutton Park) I saw this Thomas Cook Airbus A321-200 plane.

Later back at Sutton Coldfield Station (August 2017), I saw this Thomas Cook plane coming into land at Birmingham Airport. Sutton Coldfield is on the flight path into the airport. Was also an Airbus A321-200.

A close up view of this Thomas Cook plane during June 2018 at Birmingham Airport. In departures, heading to the gate to get a Jet2 flight to Pisa in Italy, for the Florence and Tuscany holiday. Another Airbus A321-200. Behind was several Flybe planes.

Another good station for seeing planes taking off or landing from Birmingham Airport was Stechford Station. I saw this Thomas Cook plane from Stechford during October 2018. Also an Airbus A321-200. This one was taking off.

Also in October 2018 was the visit to Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens, where I saw several planes coming into land at Birmingham Airport. This one was an Airbus A320-200.

It may have also been with Condor at the time. It left the UK Thomas Cook fleet during 2018 (the Airbus A320-200's).

Back in August 2019 was when I last saw Thomas Cook planes at Birmingham Airport. This view was from the X1 National Express West Midlands Platinum bus I'd caught from South Yardley to the airport. At the time there was also a pair of TUI planes to the left.

I popped into Car Park 5 where I saw this Thomas Cook Airbus A321-200. The last time I would see it there before the airline went bust in the following month.

Now for a bonus photo.

In May 2011 having just landed at Nice Airport in Frane with BMI Baby, I saw this pair of Thomas Cook Belgium planes (before I got off the BMI Baby plane). This airline was founded in 2001, started operating from 2002 and ceased operating in 2017. These were Airbus A320-200's. The planes were later transferred to other airlines, including one to the UK based Thomas Cook Airlines.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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11 Jun 2020 - Elliott Brown
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Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: Flybe with their Embraer E-Jet's

Flybe went out of business in early March 2020 as the pandemic took hold on the world. They were founded in 1970 (as Jersey European Airways). They had routes all over Europe and connected England to Scotland and to Northern Ireland by plane. To Europe they used the Embraer E175 and E195 jets. 

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Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: Flybe with their Embraer E-Jet's





Flybe went out of business in early March 2020 as the pandemic took hold on the world. They were founded in 1970 (as Jersey European Airways). They had routes all over Europe and connected England to Scotland and to Northern Ireland by plane. To Europe they used the Embraer E175 and E195 jets. 


flybe

I previously covered the Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 in this post here: Flybe Bombardier Dash 8 Q400: The fastest way from A to Flybe - Faster than Road or Rail.

This time we are going to cover the Embraer E-Jet planes that Flybe used in their last decade of operation.

The Embraer E-Jet is a narrow-body short to medium range twin engines jet airliners, carrying 66 to 12 passengers commercially. Made by Brazilian aerospace manufacturer Embraer. Flybe had the Embraer 175 from 2010. And the Embraer 195 from 2005 until 2020.

 

Seen at Birmingham Airport during June 2012 was this Flybe Embraer E-195 plane. We were at the airport waiting to catch our flight to Naples with Thomson Airways at the time.

I saw this Flybe plane take off from Birmingham Airport from the Sheldon Country Park during February 2015. It was an Embraer E-195.

This Flybe plane was seen from Stechford Station taking off from Birmingham Airport, during September 2015. Another Embraer E-195.

In March 2016 from the Sheldon Country Park. After I saw the Emirates Airbus A380 landing at Birmingham Airport for the first time, saw this Flybe plane taxiing to the runway ready to take off.

As before it was an Embraer E-195. Shortly after this it took off from runway 15.

Another Flybe Embraer E-195 had just landed and was taxiing back to the terminal building.

I was walking back to Marston Green Station. There is a good view from the path, if you can see planes on the taxiiway.

At Birmingham Airport in June 2016. In the terminal building heading to the gate to get our Flybe flight to Milan Malpensa Airport on an Embraer 175 for the Lake Como holiday in Italy. The window was a bit obscured if you want to take photos of the planes.

Having boarded our flight to Milan, saw another Flybe Embraer 175 next to our plane.

The plane wing of our Flybe plane, and the tail end of the one next to it.

One week later back at Birmingham Airport at the beginning of July 2016. Our plane had just arrived back at the terminal building. Meanwhile luggage was heading to the other Flybe plane next to ours, as we waited to get off this one.

Back to the Sheldon Country Park in November 2016. A bit of lunchtime plane spotting. Saw this Flybe Embraer E-175 take off.

Turning around as I saw the Flybe Embraer E-175 go on it's way.

In March 2017, I was walking down Church Road in Sheldon, when I saw this Flybe Embraer 175 taking off from Birmingham Airport.

Back at Birmingham Airport in June 2017 for another holiday. This time flying to Lyon–Saint-Exupéry Airport for Burgundy in France. Passengers seen boarding this  Embraer 175, going up the steps at the front. Seen through one of those fuzzy windows in the terminal building, as we headed for the gate.

Saw another Flybe Embraer 175 as I waited in the area near the departure gates.

It was raining that morning at Birmingham Airport. As I saw another Flybe Embraer 175 come in.

In October 2017, I was on a train heading for Coventry, seeing the last of the Monarch planes (after they went bust). I also saw this purple Welcome to Yorkshire livery on this Flybe Embraer 195.

There was also a Qatar Airways plane to the left. Was steps at the front of the Welcome to Yorkshire plane, but I don't think it was set up for passengers to get on board. Maybe just the airline staff.

During August 2018 I headed for the plane spotting area near the Coventry Road, on the A45. The walk from the Holiday Inn, crossing at the traffic lights, then walking around the semi circle, until you are on the path over where the planes take off from runway 33.  One of the planes to take off at the time was this Flybe Embraer 175.

There area is called the Birmingham Airport Viewing Area South End. I've only been to it once. And it is possible to walk beyond here to Catherine-de-Barnes. The Flybe plane goes on it's way to it's destination after leaving Birmingham Airport.

I was back at Stechford Station in October 2018, as the clocks went back to GMT. While waiting for my train, saw planes taking off from Birmingham Airport. Saw the purple Welcome to Yorkshire Flybe plane again. Was an Embraer 195. Probably the same plane I'd seen from the train in October 2017.

Was also this Flybe plane in their normal sky blue and white colours taking off. This one was a Embraer 175.

A Flybe plane takes off from Birmingham Airport in August 2019. Seen from the local bus stops, I was waiting for an X1 to Birmingham, but ended up getting an X12 to Solihull Town Centre instead. This is a sight you will no longer see sadly from Birmingham Airport (a Flybe plane taking off).

The last time I saw the purple Welcome to Yorkshire Flybe plane landing at Birmingham Airport was from Stechford Station in December 2019. The airline would go out of business 3 months later. It was the same plane that I saw before in previous years. Was at Stechford to see the last of Virgin Trains before they handed over the West Coast Mainline franchise to Avanti West Coast. Was also delays with the trains on London Northwestern Railway, so was at the station for about an hour.

Next time we will cover Thomas Cook Airlines, who also recently ceased to exist.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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22 May 2020 - Elliott Brown
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From Thomson to TUI Airways at Birmingham Airport

We have flown with what used to be Thomson Airways from Birmingham Airport in July 2010 to Verona, Italy and June 2012 to Naples, Italy. Thomson Airways was renamed to TUI in 2017. They were branded as Thomson Airways from 2008 until they were rebranded as TUI Airways in 2017. As far as I am aware, TUI is still in operation.

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From Thomson to TUI Airways at Birmingham Airport





We have flown with what used to be Thomson Airways from Birmingham Airport in July 2010 to Verona, Italy and June 2012 to Naples, Italy. Thomson Airways was renamed to TUI in 2017. They were branded as Thomson Airways from 2008 until they were rebranded as TUI Airways in 2017. As far as I am aware, TUI is still in operation.


TUI Airways

In 2007 Thomsonfly merged with First Choice Airways and was rebranded to Thomson Airways in 2008. This followed the merger of the travel divisions of TUI Group and First Choice Holidays in September 2007. By 2015 it was announced that TUI would be rebranding all operations to TUI. Thomson Airways changed their legal name to TUI Airways from October 2017.

Thomson / TUI has destinations all over Europe, to the Caribbean and India from Birmingham Airport.

 

In October 2010, while in Park Street Gardens in Eastside, I saw this Thomson Airways plane flying overhead. Back in July 2010, we flew to Verona in Italy for the Lake Garda holiday. But at the time, I didn't take any exteriors of the plane (only photos out of the plane window above the clouds).

In June 2012 at the Terminal at Birmingham Airport, heading to get our flight to Naples in Italy.  There was still First Choice branding on the airbridge at the time.

Our Thomson plane would be a Boeing 757-200. On both this and the July 2010 flight 2 years earlier, we had an on board meal heated up in the plane. We came back the week later from Naples at night.

In June 2014 at the Terminal building in Birmingham Airport, saw this Thomson Airways plane, as we waited to catch our flight to Malaga in Spain with Monarch. I think this was a Boeing 737-800

During the August 2014 visit to Blakesley Hall, I saw this plane fly overhead. I think it was Thomson Airways, with their distinctive sky blue livery. (I don't think it was Flybe or KLM).

Seen in March 2015 was this Thomson Airways plane (below). Seen from a train as it departed from Birmingham International Station.

This Thomson Airways plane was also visible from the train back in October 2016. I had just caught a train from Birmingham International. The airport buses that takes you from the terminal to the steps of the plane (or vice versa) were seen nearby as well.

In January 2017, TUI planes were still branded as Thomson at the time. This might have been a Boeing 787 Dreamliner. It was seen from a the 966 NXWM Platinum bus.

Now onto February 2017 with this Thomson plane. The view from Car Park 5, but a tree was in the way.

I first saw a TUI branded plane in June 2017. Was at the Airport while waiting to catch our Flybe flight to Lyon in France.

In June 2018, I saw this TUI plane close to the Terminal building, as we headed to catch our flight to Pisa in Italy with Jet2. The airbridge was now being advertised by MG. Birmingham the home of MG

The first time I saw a TUI branded plane in flight was in August 2018. This was from the viewing area near the A45 Coventry Road.

Get off the bus near the Holiday Inn, then cross at the lights, then walk around the semi circle path until you are in view of the runway.

I've only been to this viewing area once, but saw several other planes taking off over the A45. I have loads of memories of coming into land over this end.

Now onto November 2018 with this view of a TUI plane, from the the X1 NXWM Platinum bus. The buses have their own semi circle road close to the A45 that leads to the Airport and NEC.

My last view from an X1 NXWM Platinum bus was of this pair of TUI planes during August 2019.

BONUS THOMSON TUI PHOTOS

At Malaga Airport in Spain during June 2014, I saw this Thomson Airways plane, a Boeing 737-800 at the airport.

We were waiting to catch our delayed Monarch flight back to Birmingham (we waited around for hours as was a French Air Traffic Control strike that day).

By this point we had got on board our Monarch plane and I got some more views of the Thomson plane.

One more view of Thomson as a British Airways plane went behind at Malaga.

In June 2017, while waiting to fly back to Birmingham with Flybe, saw this TUI related plane from Jetairfly at Lyon–Saint-Exupéry Airport. They were founded in 2003, but started operations in 2005. They were rebranded to TUI fly Belgium in 2016. Although the plane I saw in 2017 was still branded as Jetairfly.

I think this would have been a view from the terminal building at Lyon Airport of Jetairfly. It has the same tail fin logo as Thomson and TUI.

This view from the Flybe plane as we had just boarded it as Jetairfly was connected to the airbridge. My seat on Flybe was near the wing on the left.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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14 May 2020 - Elliott Brown
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RAF A400M and C17 flights over the skies of Birmingham in May 2020

There has been several test flights by the RAF A400M and C17 over the skies of Birmingham, and the rest of the country since British Airspace went quite since lockdown came into force. So the RAF have been having test flights. During April 2020 I kept missing seeing the planes, although saw it once but not camera ready. 7th May for A400M and 11th May for the C17.

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RAF A400M and C17 flights over the skies of Birmingham in May 2020





There has been several test flights by the RAF A400M and C17 over the skies of Birmingham, and the rest of the country since British Airspace went quite since lockdown came into force. So the RAF have been having test flights. During April 2020 I kept missing seeing the planes, although saw it once but not camera ready. 7th May for A400M and 11th May for the C17.


On Thursday 7th May 2020, I was made aware that the RAF A400M was scheduled to fly over the skies of Birmingham, just didn't know when. Sometime after 7pm that evening, I could here it coming, so rushed up to get my camera and take some zoom ins as it circled over Birmingham. I've got Super Zoom, but it was going beyond optical zoom on my bridge camera to digital zoom. And was a bit hard to lock onto the plane as it flew around, but tried my best. Gallery below of the nine photos I got.

 

Monday 11th May 2020 update: saw it again, accept it was an RAF C17. See the photos further down the post. Actually rushed up the stairs twice to get my camera, the C17 went around about twice.

 

The Airbus A400M is a four engine turboprop military transport aircraft. In the UK, it has been in service with the Royal Air Force since 2014. They had an order of 25, but that was reduced to 22.

 

With a clear blue sky that evening, also caught some shadows on the military plane as it flew overhead. This after 7pm in the evening.

The A400M has four sets of propellers.

 

Before that, the only none commercial plane I've seen while on a daily walk on lockdown was this Embraer Phenom 300 - G-CKAZ. On Friday 24th April 2020. It was going on a round trip from Birmingham Airport and back. Then it went up again and back to BHX.

 

Update on the 11th May 2020. Saw another military plane flying over the skies of Birmingham, thought it was the A400M, but no, it was the C17 Globemaster.

It was originally developed for the United States Air Force in the 1980s to the early 1990s. Also known as: McDonnell Douglas/Boeing C-17 Globemaster III. The Royal Air Force started receiving them in the late 1990s. They received several of them in the 2000s and 2010s.

 

Saw it twice around 1pm at lunchtime. The C17 has four sets of jets.

The second return so I up I went to get some more photo zoom ins.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks to all my followers.

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13 May 2020 - Elliott Brown
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Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: BMI Baby

In Part 2 of our look at airlines sadly gone from Birmingham Airport, we look at BMI Baby. This low cost airline operated from 2002 until 2012. Trading as Bmibaby Limited (styled as bmibaby.com). They had bases at Birmingham Airport and East Midlands Airport. I only got to fly with them in May 2011 to Nice and back. Sadly they went out of business in 2012.

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Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: BMI Baby





In Part 2 of our look at airlines sadly gone from Birmingham Airport, we look at BMI Baby. This low cost airline operated from 2002 until 2012. Trading as Bmibaby Limited (styled as bmibaby.com). They had bases at Birmingham Airport and East Midlands Airport. I only got to fly with them in May 2011 to Nice and back. Sadly they went out of business in 2012.


Bmibaby

Bmibaby operated from 2002 until 2012 and was a low cost British airline, with bases at Birmingham Airport and East Midlands Airport. At the time that they went out of business, they were using Boeing 737-300 and Boeing 737-500 planes. They were quite small.

Only once went on holiday with them, heading to Nice Airport (for the Provence holiday in the South of France during May 2011). I did see them once more at Birmingham Airport in June 2012.

 

Billboard seen near Olton Station in June 2010 for bmibaby.com. It was near bridge no 208 on Ulverley Green Road in Olton, Solihull.

Scorchio, baby!

They had (at the time) loads of great summer flights from only £24.99. To places such as Faro, Nice or Alicante.

Another billboard, this one was seen on the Coventry Road in Sheldon (not far from the Sheldon Country Park). During January 2012.

BRIGHTEN UP YOUR JANUARY BABY!

At the time they were having a massive January Sale on flights & holidays. But they announced in May 2012 that they would be shutting down by September 2012. So it was a bit too late. (Hopefully Summer 2012 wasn't too badly affected by the eventual shut-down).

 

While at Birmingham Airport in June 2012 (before catching our Thomson Airways flight to Naples in Italy) saw these bmibaby.com planes. Boeing 737-300.

They had different images of babies on the tail fin at the back. This was a year after we flew with them to Nice in the South of France.

 

Some views from the May 2011 flight with bmibaby from Birmingham to Nice.

 

Some views of the plane wing on the flight back from Nice to Birmingham, May 2011. Was sitting near the window closest to the wing on the right.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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21 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
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Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: Monarch Airlines

One of the many budget airlines that used to have many routes in and out of Birmingham Airport was Monarch Airlines. With their distinctive yellow, white and navy blue planes. Mostly Boeing 737-800's. In their later years they also had Airbus A320-200's and A321-200's. I mostly saw them at Birmingham Airport between 2012 and 2017. Some views from the train, some airside.

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Airlines gone but not forgotten at Birmingham Airport: Monarch Airlines





One of the many budget airlines that used to have many routes in and out of Birmingham Airport was Monarch Airlines. With their distinctive yellow, white and navy blue planes. Mostly Boeing 737-800's. In their later years they also had Airbus A320-200's and A321-200's. I mostly saw them at Birmingham Airport between 2012 and 2017. Some views from the train, some airside.


Monarch Airlines

Monarch Airlines, usually known as just Monarch was founded in 1967. It later became a low-cost airline. Originally a British charter and scheduled airline, they abandoned charter flying completely in 2004. Their headquarters was in Luton. They also had bases in Birmingham, Leeds/Bradford, Gatwick and Manchester. Monarch collapsed into administration in 2017, leaving 100,000 passengers and holiday makers stranded overseas. Two years later (in 2019) Thomas Cook collapsed, and earlier in 2020, Flybe also ceased to exist.

Here we will just be looking at Monarch.

 

Before I had ever taken photos of Monarch planes taking off or landing at Birmingham Airport, I once saw the Monarch Beach in Chamberlain Square during June 2009. They were advertising the kind of holidays you could go with them to mainland Europe and beyond.

I had originally posted these three photos in this post A variety of events that were held in Chamberlain Square until 2015.

BRMB provided the entertainment (now part of Free Radio).

The fake beach had purple and white deckchairs on the sand in Chamberlain Square. But Monarch was not just about flying to beaches on the continent.

In June 2012 we were at Birmingham Airport, heading to catch our flight to Naples International Airport (Aeroporto Internazionale di Napoli) with Thomson Airways when I saw this Monarch plane. With the slogan Fly your way, Every way.

It wouldn't be until the June 2014 holiday to Classical Spain that we would fly with Monarch. Taking us to Málaga Airport (Málaga–Costa del Sol Airport / Aeropuerto de Málaga-Costa del Sol). There was quite a few Monarch planes outside of the terminal building. The plane we would go on would be an Airbus A321-200.

Luggage getting loaded onto this Monarch plane on the left.

The airbridge to this Monarch plane was sponsored by RSC: Royal Shakespeare Company. Experience a different kind of Theatre.

I saw this Monarch plane from the plane window of the Monarch plane I had just got on board, so had just put my seat belt on, our hand luggage going into the overhead storage locker and so on. Before taxiing to the runway and taking off.

One week later, after a wonderful holiday around Classical Spain (including Seville and Granada) we flew back from Málaga, and I took this photo of the Monarch plane (after heading down the steps but before heading to the bus). There was a French Air Traffic Control strike at the time, so we spent much longer at Málaga Airport than expected. And when we did take off from Spain, we flew over Portugal and the North Atlantic Ocean, avoiding French airspace. Eventually flying back into UK airspace over Cornwall and Wales. At the time I did not know that this would be the last time that we would fly with Monarch!

A few years later now, around March 2016 and I saw this Monarch plane come into land from the Sheldon Country Park. This was after I headed to the park to see the Emirates Airbus A380 come into land at Birmingham Airport for the first time, and there was a large crowd in the park to see it! After that, I walked back to Marston Green Station to get a train to Birmingham New Street one way.

See my posts on Emirates Airbus A380 and the Sheldon Country Park.

In October 2016, I had caught a train at Birmingham International Station, after attending Destination Star Trek Europe at the NEC. On the way back to Birmingham New Street, I saw this Monarch plane at Birmingham Airport.

The Monarch hanger and a Monarch plane seen from Car Park 5 at Birmingham Airport during December 2016. This was actually a view of a Ryanair plane that had just landed, but I've cropped it to mostly just show Monarch. I had got off the X1 NXWM Platinum bus near the car park, for a bit of plane spotting.

The next time I saw some Monarch planes on the tarmac was from a train I was on coming back from a day out around Rugby during April 2017.

It's a bit difficult from the train getting plane photos at Birmingham Airport without getting passing trees in the way. In this view a pair of Monarch planes.

The next time I saw the Monarch planes on the tarmac at Birmingham Airport was after the airline had gone out of business during October 2017. Monarch went into administration on the 2nd of October 2017, and the time I saw them was on the 7th of October 2017. I was on a train heading to Coventry (it was the day I went to check out the Coventry Canal Basin).

There was at least 3 Monarch planes here, next to a Flybe plane in Welcome to Yorkshire livery. The Air Traffic Control Tower is seen to the right.

Also visible with the three Monarch planes and the solo Flybe plane was Qatar Airways. Other airlines such as Qatar were used at the time to get stranded passengers overseas back home to the UK. To the right of the Air Traffic Control Tower is a Travelodge hotel.

The further the train went past, the harder it was to see a Monarch plane. This one was behind several buses (the ones that you use when you get off a plane and go down the steps, or vice versa if the airbridge can't be used). I wouldn't see these planes in the final Monarch livery ever again.

Coming back from Barcelona Airport (Josep Tarradellas Barcelona–El Prat Airport / Aeroport Josep Tarradellas Barcelona-El Prat / Aeropuerto Josep Tarradellas Barcelona-El Prat) with Ryanair in May 2019, I saw this Olympus plane on the tarmac (at Birmingham Airport). Clearly it was a former Monarch plane. You can tell by the yellow, white and navy blue colours. It was one of Monarch's former Airbus A321-200 planes.

In the future, I might do Birmingham Airport planes posts on:

  • Thomas Cook Airlines (defunct)
  • BMI Baby (defunct)
  • Ryanair
  • Thomson Airways (now TUI)
  • Flybe (now defunct - could do one on the Embraer 175 or 195)
  • Qatar Airways
  • Easyjet
  • Jet2
  • Emirates (a post about the Boeing 777)

To name a few that I can think of.

Links to existing plane related posts:

  1. Flybe Bombardier Dash 8 Q400
  2. Emirates Airbus A380
  3. British Airways diverts

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at 1,110 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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02 Sep 2019 - Elliott Brown
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Flybe Bombardier Dash 8 Q400: The fastest way from A to Flybe - Faster than Road or Rail

You can get domestic flights across the UK with Flybe at Birmingham Airport. Up to Scotland or over to Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland on a Flybe Bombardier Dash 8 Q400. I've not been on one myself but seen plenty at Birmingham Airport or over the skies of the West Midlands! Flybe also use a small number of ATR 72 planes, but operated by other airlines on their behalf.

Related

Flybe Bombardier Dash 8 Q400: The fastest way from A to Flybe - Faster than Road or Rail





You can get domestic flights across the UK with Flybe at Birmingham Airport. Up to Scotland or over to Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland on a Flybe Bombardier Dash 8 Q400. I've not been on one myself but seen plenty at Birmingham Airport or over the skies of the West Midlands! Flybe also use a small number of ATR 72 planes, but operated by other airlines on their behalf.


Flybe Dash 8 Q400

Flybe is the worlds largest operator of the Dash 8 Q400. They have either been in a white and sky blue livery, or more recently a purple livery.

Birmingham Airport

This view from June 2012. Was heading to catch a flight to Naples (with Thomson Airways).

This December 2016 view from Car Park 5 at Birmingham Airport. There is a bus stop outside of the car park and you can get off the X1 or X12.

The Sheldon Country Park is a good location for plane spotting, not far from Marston Green Station. This view from the middle of March 2017 as this purple Flybe Dash came into land at runway 15 over the park.

About 10 days later back at the Sheldon Country Park near the end of March 2017. This purple Flybe Dash was seen taking off.

Had just landed back from Lyon at Birmingham Airport in a Flybe Embraer 175 (as my plane taxiied back to the terminal building), when I saw this white and sky blue Flybe Dash plane, during June 2017.

As my plane ended it's journey at the Terminal building, saw a few more purple Flybe planes with a Shell tanker to the left. June 2017. You can also see the Air Traffic Control Tower from here, but it didn't have the Flybe name on it at the time. "Fast than road or rail".

In June 2018 I was waiting to get on my Jet2 plane to Pisa. I saw this white Flybe Dash taxiing back to the terminal building. Can just about glimpse the City Skyline in the background.

In August 2018 I tried plane spotting from another location near Birmingham Airport. The Birmingham Airport Viewing Area South End. Got off the bus near the Holiday Inn, and walked up the paths along the Coventry Road, round the semi circle that was changed for the runway extension. Directly opposite runway 33 is the viewing area just beyond the runway and the A45 Coventry Road. Saw this purple Flybe Dash taking off.

In May 2019 shortly after landing back from Barcelona with Ryanair saw these puprle Flybe Dash planes near the Terminal building. The area where Ryanair is based is usually to the right of where Flybe is normally based at the airport.

Back to Car Park 5 at Birmingham Airport at the end of August 2019. Saw this white and sky blue Dash 8 taking off.

This purple Dash 8 was not that far from the Terminal buildings (but passengers may have to access it via a bus). Says Scotland at the front.

Erdington

There are other places to see planes coming to land and take off from Birmingham Airport. In May 2014 I went to Erdington for the first time, and saw this white Flybe Dash from the Chester Road.

I've only been to Erdington Station once, and in May 2014 saw several planes coming into Birmingham Airport including thie white and sky blue Flybe Dash.

Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens

These gardens in Castle Bromwich are closer to the airport in Solihull Borough, so the planes were much closer to see. Saw this white and sky blue Flybe Dash coming into land at Birmingham Airport during October 2018.

There was also this purple Flybe Dash seen from the same gardens in Castle Bromwich. Details were quite clear on zoom in.

Bonus plane photo from Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens. This ATR 72-500 seen during Octobe 2018 coming into land at Birmingham Airport. From March 2019, the plane went back to the Irish carrier Stobart Air. At the time had a distinctive white nose.

Stechford

Another place to see planes coming into Birmingham Airport is from Stechford Station. Saw this white and sky blue Flybe Dash taking off during late October 2018.

This ATR 72-500 seen over Stechford Station during October 2018. Blue Islands were operating it on behalf of Flybe. The ATR's look similar to the Dash 8's but the body of the plane is slightly different.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

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05 Aug 2019 - Elliott Brown
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British Airways diverts at Birmingham Airport (December 2016)

I headed to Car Park 5 back during December 2016 at Birmingham Airport. During a period of bad weather that caused several British Airways planes to land and take off from Birmingham Airport instead of Heathrow. So a rare sighting of BA's world famous Boeing 747-400! Wish that BA would start regular flights from Birmingham again, we mostly just have the budget carriers such as Flybe.

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British Airways diverts at Birmingham Airport (December 2016)





I headed to Car Park 5 back during December 2016 at Birmingham Airport. During a period of bad weather that caused several British Airways planes to land and take off from Birmingham Airport instead of Heathrow. So a rare sighting of BA's world famous Boeing 747-400! Wish that BA would start regular flights from Birmingham again, we mostly just have the budget carriers such as Flybe.


There are several plane spotting points around Birmingham Airport. One of them is in Car Park 5. I got a X1 National Express West Midlands Platinum bus to the bus stop outside of the car park. I've got a bus here a couple of times (but not recently).

On the 17th December 2016, there it was day of bad weather over London, which resulted in British Airways being forced to divert their famous planes to Birmingham!

My first glimpse of a British Airways Boeing 747-400.

A zoom in of this BA Boeing 747-400. The distinctive Union Jack tail fin at the back.

The side view of this British Airways Boeing 747-400 next to a Birmingham Airport sign. A rare sighting these days.

Seen taking off was this British Airways Embraer ERJ-190SR.

Another angle of this BA Embraer ERJ-190SR.

Bonus photos taken at Malaga Airport in Spain during June 2014. This was before I flew back to Birmingham with Monarch (not with BA). At the time there was a French Air Traffic Control strike so we were waiting at this airport for hours.

This photo of another British Airways plane taken from the Monarch plane I was on. Was stuck on the plane for hours before it was given permission to take off. Has been several occasions in the past being at airports when Air Traffic Control strikes have been on in France (usually resulting in not being able to fly over French airspace).

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

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11 Jul 2019 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Birmingham Airport Arrivals and Departures

Arriving by taxi, bus or the air rail link at Birmingham Airport. And heading off on your summer holiday. Check your suitcase in. Go up to security and the departure lounge / duty free. Hello World. Off to France or Italy or Spain? Anywhere else? Come back a week later to a waiting taxi to take you home. 

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Birmingham Airport Arrivals and Departures





Arriving by taxi, bus or the air rail link at Birmingham Airport. And heading off on your summer holiday. Check your suitcase in. Go up to security and the departure lounge / duty free. Hello World. Off to France or Italy or Spain? Anywhere else? Come back a week later to a waiting taxi to take you home. 


Birmingham Airport opened in July 1939, so in July 2019 it is now 80 years old. Originally as Elmdon Airport. The new terminal buildings opened in 1984 originally as Terminal 1 and 2, but it's now just one terminal, and was previously called Birmingham International Airport. The terminals merged in 2011, while the runway extension opened in 2014. The new Air Traffic Control Tower was opened in 2013.

There is a pair of finger posts outside of the Birmingham Airport Terminal buildings and near the car parks. You would see them if you get out of a taxi, or off the bus. This one for the Midlands destinations, so more for holiday makers from overseas coming into Birmingham. From Birmingham to Oxfordshire and beyond! Seen in November 2015.

But if you are heading overseas to mainland Europe, then how many miles or kilometers are your destinations? Listed here from Berlin to Paris and Dublin. Seen during February 2017.

Getting out of the taxi with your suitcase around this area. So was a bit awkward stopping to take photos of the Airport buildings. Departures are normally to the far right of here. These views from June 2012.

Then again if you are arriving back at Birmingham Airport, you might exit via these doors, heading to your taxi or bus. The taxi rank is to the left. While local buses stop at stops to the right.

Hello World. You may see this sign and some other languages before you head in to the check in desks for your airline.

The bus stops at Birmingham Airport. The X1 runs between Birmingham and Coventry. The X12 between Solihull and Birmingham via Chelmsley Wood. National Express coaches also stop near here. Seen here during February 2017. Hotels nearby here as well.

Hello World. Welcome to Birmingham Airport. Seen during November 2015. You can't yet fly into the Earth's orbit. Just above the clouds.

The Hello World sign was near the then Thomson Airways check in desks. They are now TUI. Put your suitcase on the conveyor belt, and it will be weighed, and the staff member will put a tag on your bag, and scan your passport. Plus print off your boarding pass!

The fastest way from A to Flybe. Once you are done with checking in your luggage, you can head up to Departures this way. Passengers only. Get ready for security. Once you have passed through there, Duty Free is next then the large Departures lounge. You may end up waiting up to 2 hours before you get onto your plane.

Saw this during June 2017, while checking into the Flybe desks. Jet2 Holidays had a 22KG baggage limit for your hold luggage. If you go with Ryanair, we found that you had to print off your boarding passes in advance, and pay extra to have your hand luggage in the overhead lockers as Priority booking. Also found in May 2019, that we had to use the e-check-in machines (meaning we had to scan our passport ourselves and print off the label for the suitcase). Birmingham Airport also has e-Gates for your passports, but not on every side. Coming back with Ryanair, was the normal Border Control manned gates / desks. But used e-gates over in Barcelona Airport.

The check in desks for Lufthansa and Swiss - Economy Class. This was the view from Caffe Nero during November 2018. At the far end was Qatar Airways.

It was June 2018 and saw this as I left the Departures Lounge heading to get my Jet2.com plane. Friendly low fares. I had the aisle seat, so was unable to get windows out of the plane window on the way to Italy (but got a window seat on the way back). You usually have to wait until the gate is announced, so sit around and wait, before queuing up.

Near the area for the Flybe and Jet2 gates was another Duty Free. Much smaller than the bigger one between Security and the Departures Lounge. A much smaller World of Duty Free. Seen June 2017. There is also a bar around here, and another Costa Coffee. We would only get something from Duty Free overseas, not here at Birmingham!

In June 2012, just on my Thomson Airways plane, saw the new Air Traffic Control Tower in the distance from the plane window. It had the Olympic Rings on it, while London had the London 2012 Olympic Games on (later taken down after the games had finished).

It was the beginning of July 2018, and had just come back to Birmingham Airport in the late evening after dark. To these wonderful lights, that I saw before heading to the right to get a taxi back home. You can also head left to the buses and Air Rail Link (it closes at a certain time of night).

The Birmingham Airport sign at Arrivals after dark. Looking peaceful, and not many people about by the looks of it.

Birmingham Airport started here at the Elmdon Airport building back in 1939! Seen from the X1 NXWM Platinum bus during February 2017. It is now a Grade II listed building Elmdon Terminal Building, Birmingham Airport since August 2018. Hopefully it will get some use in the future.

Decided to add planes to a future post rather than this one! Also you can arrive at Birmingham International Station by train, before heading to the airport and getting your plane!

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

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12 Jun 2019 - Elliott Brown
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Emirates Airbus A380 : the super double decker plane from Dubai in Birmingham and the Midlands

Emirates started flying there infamous Airbus A380 plane from Dubai to Birmingham Airport from Spring 2016. They now have 2 daily services between the West Midlands and UAE. The plane is quite a sight to see. Double decker with big wings and 4 jets. I always look out for it in the sky or at BHX. You can also see it from the local bus or train routes. I once saw it from Kenilworth. 

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Emirates Airbus A380 : the super double decker plane from Dubai in Birmingham and the Midlands





Emirates started flying there infamous Airbus A380 plane from Dubai to Birmingham Airport from Spring 2016. They now have 2 daily services between the West Midlands and UAE. The plane is quite a sight to see. Double decker with big wings and 4 jets. I always look out for it in the sky or at BHX. You can also see it from the local bus or train routes. I once saw it from Kenilworth. 


Over the Easter weekend of March 2016, a crowd of people headed to the Sheldon Country Park to see the Emirates Airbus A380 land at the park for the first time. It took me 3 buses to get to the Marston Green Station Interchange, and I just about saw it coming into land at runway 15. Was quite the sight to see having a giant plane coming overhead!

After this, the airport did the traditional fire hose welcome that they do to new airlines or new routes. I was hoping to get more shots at this time from it landing, but I arrived at the park at bit late. So after it landed, I zoomed in through the fence towards where the plane was getting hosed!

After the hosing had stopped a better view of the plane. A distant church spire seen behind. That's St Peter's Church, Bickenhill.

A good view of the Emirates Airbus A380 at Birmingham Airport is from the window of the X1 National Express West Midlands Platinum bus. The bus lane curves around the runway extension, and gives you good views of the airport. This was during December 2017.

A closer up look, more detailed view from the bus during December 2017. There is a double decker ramp to access both levels of the plane.

Another ride of the X1 NXWM Platinum bus, this time during March 2018. At this time, you could see the lifting equipment to get luggage on or off the double decker plane! Compare it to the tiny plane at the bottom of the picture!

A more detailed view of A380 during March 2018.

Landing back at Birmingham Airport with Jet2 during early July 2018 (from Pisa, Italy), as we came in to the terminal, saw the Emirates Airbus A380! One is at the airport during midday, and one in the late evening, like this one.

On a sunny November 2018 day, once again got another shot of the Emirates Airbus A380 from the X1 NXWM Platinum bus. This time heading back towards the Coventry Road. To the left was a Jet2.com plane, similar to the ones I had been on during June / July 2018 (for the Tuscany holiday). Usually from that far out (with Jet2 or other airlines), you have to get on a bus to take you back to the terminal building (for passport control and baggage claim).

I visited the newly opened Kenilworth Station during early May 2018, and when I went back to catch my train back to Leamington Spa, I saw the Emirates Airbus A380!

I saw it turn around as it headed to runway 33 at Birmingham Airport. It is so massive! Imagine being at Kenilworth Castle and seeing this above?

Continuing to turn around on it's approach to Birmingham Airport during May 2019. What a beast!

Wheels out, not long before it landed at Birmingham Airport. Passengers would have seen the A45 semi circle re-route due to the runway extension of several years ago.

This March 2019 view from a London Northwestern Railway Class 350 train I caught at Coventry heading to Birmingham New Street. There is a view of Birmingham Airport from the West Coast Mainline. At this time you could see the Emirates Airbus A380 with a Lufthansa Airbus A320. Several buses nearby, which are used to take passengers from the plane to the terminal, when the ramp isn't attached, or it's too far from the plane to the terminal building.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

My Flickr is here ell brown.

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23 May 2019 - Elliott Brown
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Taking off or Coming into land at Birmingham Airport

I usually get the window seat on my planes in and out of Birmingham Airport, so I try to get photos out of the window, normally near the wing. During actual take off / landing I don't have my camera out (so may miss things I see from the window). But this is what I have got. I have just come back from Barcelona (May 2019). Photos also from the return from Lyon 2017.

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Taking off or Coming into land at Birmingham Airport





I usually get the window seat on my planes in and out of Birmingham Airport, so I try to get photos out of the window, normally near the wing. During actual take off / landing I don't have my camera out (so may miss things I see from the window). But this is what I have got. I have just come back from Barcelona (May 2019). Photos also from the return from Lyon 2017.


If I've been preoccupied by holidays and planes, it's due to my recent trip to Catalonia in Spain including Barcelona during May 2019. So not been thinking about Birmingham much. Usually go on Riviera Travel holidays (organised tours in France, Italy or Spain).

 

In June 2017 I went on a Riviera Travel holiday to Lyon and Burgundy in France. On the way back with Flybe, the plane headed over Sutton Park on the way down to runway 15 (near the Sheldon Country Park).

Heading over English fields somewhere.

Am not sure but this might be Witton or Aston?

Details hard to see from up here, but this maybe somewhere over Birmingham?

Sutton Park

Sutton Coldfield maybe.

Sutton Park - it looks really massive from up here!

Passing Erdington and Fort Dunlop.

Closer look at Fort Dunlop. Bit hard figuring out the location on Google Maps!

Probably the M6.

Somewhere between Castle Bromwich and Marston Green before landing at runway 15.

 

I have just come back from another Riviera Travel holiday to Barcelona and Catalonia in Spain, during May 2019 with Ryanair. Coming back it headed over the Warwickshire countryside down to runway 33 over the A45 Coventry Road. I had to miss the visit to the top of the Rotunda as it was the day before going to the airport! What I saw over in Spain was well worth missing the Rotunda views (a change from the same old Birmingham views).

On the first day shortly after taking off from Birmingham Airport for the 2 hour flight to Barcelona. I saw Resorts World on takeoff, but only got my camera out when we levelled up. Fields somewhere in Warwickshire (I think).

Was thinking this could be Silverstone in Northamptonshire, but it isn't. It's the British Motor Museum in Gaydon, Warwickshire with their own race track. I saw it on the way back to BHX as well! Jaguar Land Rover are also based here (probably testing out new cars).

Heading further south down England, more fields. Was a clear day on the day we flew down to Barcelona, not many clouds in the sky!

It only took around 15 minutes before we got to the English Channel. More fields in the south of England somewhere.

On the 7th day of the holiday it was time to fly home. The airport in Barcelona wasn't that far from the hotel so not far to go. After a 2 hour flight it was time to descend down to runway 33 at Birmingham Airport. Was cloudy most of the way so couldn't see much under the clouds until we went through the clouds.

Not entirely where this is below, but as a guess I could say Oxford? Before this was mostly just above the clouds.

Heading down through the layers of clouds over England somewhere. The clouds look a bit weird from up here, and it always feels like going down on a rollercoaster ride (not that I've ever been on a scary rollercoaster!).

Or maybe this is Oxford?

English fields, probably in Warwickshire.

More clear as we headed down to the runway. Flaps on the wings starting to open up.

The flaps on the wings open out exposing the insides of the wing a bit. This helps as the plane lands on the runway and to help it to slow down before taxiing back to the terminal building. I noticed that we were heading over the semi circle part of the A45 Coventry Road. Would later travel on that road in the taxi home.

 

If you want to see my French Chateaux post, it's not yet been approved, after I created it in March 2019 (but is visible to read on my page). My Italian Lakes post is up though.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown (over 1000 followers!).

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03 May 2019 - Elliott Brown
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From the plane wing at Birmingham Airport

The view from the window on the planes I've been on at Birmingham Airport, usually close to the wing! Either heading off on holiday, or coming back! Airlines in the past included BMI Baby (now defunct), Thomson Airways (now TUI), Monarch (now defunct), Flybe and Jet2.

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From the plane wing at Birmingham Airport





The view from the window on the planes I've been on at Birmingham Airport, usually close to the wing! Either heading off on holiday, or coming back! Airlines in the past included BMI Baby (now defunct), Thomson Airways (now TUI), Monarch (now defunct), Flybe and Jet2.


BMI Baby

It was May 2011, and we were heading off to Provence in the South of France. The airport we were going to was Nice. First off after a delay, an Esso tanker stopped by to fill up the plane with fuel! We went to Aix-en-Provence, Arles, Avignon and other places at the time.

One week later and back from Provence and Nice Airport! Next to my BMI Baby plane was an Air France by Britair jet. We had a delay in Nice of around an hour, waiting for the plane to get fuel. May have been a strike on at the time in France.

Air France by Britair seen pulling out. Aer Lingus and Thomson in the background.

Thomson Airways

In June 2012 we were heading for Sorrento and Naples in southern Italy. During the summer of 2012, the air traffic control tower had the Olympic rings on it for the London 2012 Olympic Games (it now has a Flybe sign on it). We came back a week later at night, but my camera at the time wasn't very good at taking night shots out of the plane window! So only daylight heading to Naples Airport! Went to the ruins of Pompeii on that holiday!

Monarch

In June 2014 coming back from Malaga in Spain, after a tour of "Classical Spain", which included stays and visits to Cordoba, Seville, Granada and other places. Here landed back at Birmingham Airport from Malaga Airport. SAS Airlines plane seen in the background.

Air India plane seen from the Monarch plane I was on.

The Monarch plane with yellow tip.

Flybe

Been with Flybe in 2016 and 2017. In June 2016 headed to Lake Como and we went to Milan-Malpensa Airport. This holiday also included visits to Lake Maggiore and a ride on the world famous Bernina Express from Italy to Switzerland.

Flybe wing on my plane, to the tail of the other Flybe plane.

A week later back at Birmingham Airport at the beginning of July 2016. Another Flybe plane seen next to the one I was about to get off! A year later in early June 2017 we flew to Lyon with Flybe. The airport we went to at the time was Lyon–Saint-Exupéry Airport. That was for a holiday in Lyon and Burgundy, including a stay in Beaune. Including visits to a few abbeys and villages as well as wine tasting in a former convent in Beaune.

Jet2.com

June 2018 and this holiday was to Florence and Tuscany. We went to Pisa Airport. A week later at the beginning of July 2018, landing back at Birmingham Airport. It was in the late evening when we got back (after a few delays at the Pisa end). That week we had also been to Volterra, Pisa, Lucca, Siena and San Gimignano.

My Jet2 plane heading to a stop. Lights on at the terminal at Birmingham Airport.

Another Jet2.com plane seen at Birmingham Airport, shortly before we got off. They have that annoying jingle on the plane, usually when you get on, an when you get off! You know, the one in the TV adverts!

Photos taken by Elliott Brown

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown (over 1000 followers!).

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27 Apr 2019 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Air Rail Link: from Birmingham Airport to Birmingham International Station and vice versa!

Between Birmingham Airport and Birmingham International Station is the Air Rail Link, a free mono rail style car that gets passengers between the airport and railway station, or the other way around! It also means you have a convenient link from the Airport to the NEC as well! There is two cars that goes along the raised tracks. The airport end is on the first floor.

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Air Rail Link: from Birmingham Airport to Birmingham International Station and vice versa!





Between Birmingham Airport and Birmingham International Station is the Air Rail Link, a free mono rail style car that gets passengers between the airport and railway station, or the other way around! It also means you have a convenient link from the Airport to the NEC as well! There is two cars that goes along the raised tracks. The airport end is on the first floor.


The first photo I took of the Air Rail Link was from outside of Birmingham Airport during November 2015. At this point I had yet to have a ride of it between Birmingham Airport and Birmingham International Station, or in the other direction. I wasn't even sure where the station at the Birmingham Airport end was at that point!

Some clearer views from January 2017. Seen from Bickenhill Lane on my walk towards Birmingham International Station. The 966 bus from Solihull (now the X12) normally heads towards Birmingham International Station first before Birmingham Airport, so I got off the bus a stop or two before the station. The X1 bus (formerly the 900) always goes towards Birmingham Airport, before Birmingham International Station first.

Passing the car park at Birmingham International Station. The only windows that you can see out of are front and back. On the sides were Fly Emirates adverts for holidayds to Australia (not good for taking photos out of the windows, so can only do that at the front or back!).

I had a close up look at one of the Air Rail Link vehicles at Birmingham International Interchange Station during January 2017. At this point, wasn't sure if the Air Rail Link was free or if you had to pay. But I later found out that it is free to ride. So that time I ended up going down the escalators and catching an X1 bus back to Birmingham instead!

On to February 2017, and I was back at Birmingham Airport. I still wasn't sure where the Birmingham Airport Station was at this point (later found out that it was on the first floor above the departures check in area). This view was close to the local bus stops. You can catch the X1 to Birmingham or Coventry. The X12 to Solihull or Birmingham. The occasional National Express coach also stops down here.

The Air Rail Link heading past one of the multi-storey car parks at Birmingham Airport. This view was taken from the X1 bus back to Birmingham. I would later try and ride the Air Rail Link during July 2017 for the first time from Birmingham International Station towards Birmingham Airport, to see what it's like.

In July 2017, I finally got a chance to ride the Air Rail Link, while the Big Sleuth trail was on. After getting the bears at Resorts World, I was aware of several little bears at the airport. This vehicle seen from Birmingham International Interchange Station.

I somehow missed the little sleuth bears, as I went down the escalators , thinking that they were in departures near the various check in desks (they weren't). The trail of small bears across Birmingham, Solihull and the Black Country was officially called "The Big Sleuth presents the Little Bears Detective Club". They were not that far from Birmingham Airport Station near one of the bars. Eventually time to get the Air Rail Link back to Birmingham International, so I could catch a train to Birmingham New Street!

The Air Rail Link car on the right heading from Birmingham Airport Station to Birmingham International Station. I was waiting for the one on the left to arrive!

And here's the one that I caught to Birmingham International Station back in July 2017. There is two compartments, and the doors have to line up with the glass doors in the station. A bit like the Jubilee Line on the London Underground. The doors must line up so that people can get off, and people can get in!

The seats at the window ends, means if you want to look out, you have to turn around, or stand up. Taking photos out of the sides were obscured by the advertisments, so out of the front window was best. I was on the car heading back to Birmingham International Interchange Station. While the other car was heading back to Birmingham Airport Station!

After arriving at Birmingham International Interchange, I took this photo after the other passengers got off, and before I got off! It's usually full of passengers, and I wouldn't want to take it with them in there! So just a quick photo, before the next load of passengers boarded for Birmingham Airport! As you can see there is only benches at the front or back ends, or standing and holding onto the poles. Even inside was an advert for Emirates to Australia!

For more photos see my album on Flickr, including the photos of the tracks. Birmingham Air-Rail Link, Flickr.

My first YouTube video that I made in August 2018 is here Birmingham Air Rail Link, YouTube. That's mostly a slideshow with the video clip at the end!

My second YouTube video is here from November 2018. Air-Rail Link from Birmingham International Interchange to Birmingham Airport, YouTube. That's the full ride towards the Airport!

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown (over 1000 followers!).

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