Routair Group


Operated from Mid-1975 to Dec 2002

Directors – Mr. Clive Wren and Mr. Nigel Stockwell

Run for much of its life by two well known SEN individuals, Routair had several irons in the fire where its business interests at the airport were concerned. Initially starting out as an engineering firm servicing light aircraft within its hangar tucked away between BAF Engineering and the rear perimeter fence, it also later ran taxi services using its single Twin Comanche aircraft. Routair Aviation Services was then set up in March 1978 after Central Flying Services had procured a TEI contract from the ailing Commutair in lieu of maintenance debts which had then resulted in RAS winning TEI’s export charter work too. Then in the ’80s, Routair began to expand into P.P.L. training (also see ‘Central Flying Services’) and eventually got involved with handling which included loading and unloading for most of the airlines that ventured into SEN, while also providing G.P.U. services for almost all aircraft with the exception of those that had something to do with BAF, Britavia or Heavylift.

Another important and arguably one of the most successful wings of the company was Routair Flying Services which was initially set up to provide worldwide charter services for Rothman’s. One such frenetic episode involved the transport of up to 90 tons of cigarettes per day between Southend & Rotterdam during July 1984. While BAF’s Viscounts undertook much of the work making as many as 6 trips daily, other larger aircraft were also charted including a Heavylift Belfast, 2 x CL-44s and an SFAIR Hercules, with Transavia’s 737s & BIA’s 1-11s also putting in appearances. In fact, over the years Routair would end up bring a huge number of freight charters through the airport.

However, other non-freight charters were carried out too, these often involving the transportation of engineers around the country or the collection/delivery of spares and parts. Examples of this included support for BAF’s early BAe 146 proving flights while one incident which involved seized brakes on a TEA 737 that had come to a halt on SEN’s main runway during 1980, resulted in one of Routair’s aircraft having to depart on the old 15/33 to collect parts. However, around 1985 this part of the company was sold on to a private investor and shortly afterwards it became Expressflight.

Meanwhile, Routair Engineering continued to concentrate on repairs, while light aircraft would also be bought, overhauled and then sold on again. The handling side of the operation would also continue well into the ’90s, but with the turn down in flights and BAF’s/BWA’s relocating of its services to Stansted in 1993, Routair finally abandoned these operations. The engineering and charter side of the company would however continue for several more years, the first being wound up around July 1996 while Routair Chartered Services finally closed its doors in December 2002 although it is likely that operations had ceased quite a time before this.

With thanks to Nigel Stockwell for providing much of the information above.


Routair fleet from 1979 to 2002

Cessna 150

G-ATZZ – 11/87 to 6/90

Sold to Matthews Air Training Services

G-AVEO – 6/89 to 6/90

Sold to Matthews Air Training Services

G-AZOZ – 1/88 to 12/90

Sold to Seawing Flying Club

G-BCPE – 2/88 to 8/90

Sold to Andrewsfield Flying Club

G-BDBU – 2/88 to 8/90

Sold to Andrewsfield Flying Club

G-TAIL – 4/89 to 12/94

Sold to Martin Bowes

Fournier RF-5

G-BLAA – 10/83 to 4/02

CoA exp 9/99 – Fate Unknown

Piper PA-28 Cherokee

G-AYUI – 9/79 to 7/90

Sold to Andrewsfield Flying Club

G-BCDJ – 4/89 to 4/97

Sold to Bristol Aero Club

G-BJRY – 1/90 to 7/93

Sold to Angus Michael Robertson

Piper PA-30 Twin Comanche

G-ATZU – 5/80 to 10/84

To Expressflight 1983


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Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.