Group calls for new Trislanders to be built

ALDERNEY’S Trislander Pressure Group has urged the States of Guernsey to reject the Aurigny budget of ‘open ended structural losses’ forecast for when an all-Dornier fleet serves the island’s routes.

trislander
The most famous Trislander of all, Aurigny's now-retired G-JOEY

The Guernsey Budget Report for 2017 estimates that Aurigny will lose £1.7m. on Alderney routes per year when the remaining three Trislanders are phased out.

A new Dornier 228 is expected to arrive next summer, joining another new one and two second-hand ones. They are expected to be converted to form a composite second-hand Dornier.

Originally it was anticipated by Aurigny that an all-Dornier fleet would save the airline £100,000 a year on an annual loss of £900,000 when the island was being served by Trislanders.

The Trislander Pressure Group wants the States to abandon its Dornier replacement programme and instead commission manufacturer Britten-Norman to build five new Trislanders for £13.3m.

Each new Dornier costs around £6m.

In a statement to Guernsey deputies, the group said: ‘In May 2014 Guernsey deputies were persuaded to approve the disastrous Dornier acquisition programme on the basis of information that was incomplete, inaccurate, misleading and fundamentally flawed.

‘As a result, Aurigny will have spent £16-18m. by mid-2017 and have only two Dorniers in service. Recent operations have clearly demonstrated that the Alderney routes cannot be run satisfactorily on this basis.’

The Trislander Pressure Group maintains that Trislanders represent the cheaper and most suitable aircraft for Alderney – despite the fact that Britten-Norman has not produced the model for more than 30 years.

Comments for: "Group calls for new Trislanders to be built"

Avgeek

So, Aurigny's just spend a few million on purchasing four Dornier/Ruag Do 228, and now Aurigny needs another five Trislanders?!?

Alvin

Obviously, looking at the picture and reading the article it must be red nose day on 1st April.

They reckon that BN will start producing the Trislander with a minimum production line of 5 planes. What about the engines, the electronics and other components. CAA inspections and approvals and all that ??

And supposing it all was achievable - BN collected enough other orders to start the production line again and could deliver in 3 or 4 years ?? What on earth are they, the so-called Trislander pressure group, going to do with five planes ??

islandgirl

Britten Norman cannot even provide spare parts for the Trislanders let alone agree to build new ones.

Wings

BN area nightmare to deal with. That's why Aurigny are giving up on using Trislanders as they cannot rely on BN to support them with spares.

The concept of a deadline is totally alien to BN.

peter65

I'm sorry but this group need to find a new hobby. Nobody listens to them anymore as they have no grasp of the aviation business. They originally said it would cost £10million for 5 trislanders, now its 13.3million. What will it be in another 6 months? 16million?

I think they are living in cloud cuckoo land.

Atlast

Cloud Cuckoo Land - Alderney? could be

islandgirl

We want modern aircraft not more Trislanders. This so called pressure group that has very few supporters should put their time to better use in Alderney!!

Douglas White

When Aurigny was negotiating with Treasury for funds to purchase 3 brand new Dornier 228, at a time when Sterling was pretty strong, the self appointed Alderney Pressure Group actively campaigned in Guernsey for the deal not to be done & it wasn't. Whether they can take responsibility for that we don't know but I can't see that the decision has helped us very much.

Viscount Lover

Given the population of Alderney is I think less than 2000, they are lucky to have an airlink & should stop complaining. In my opinion the only air route the island should have is to Guernsey, the loss making Southampton route should be axed with immediate effect.

peter65

I think the Southampton route is the route that is actually making money, or at least breaking even. Looking at the prices for Southampton return of around £290 it can't be losing surely.

Alvin

It is absurd to label the people of Alderney "lucky" just because they need to have an air-link, especially as there is no reasonable sea-link.

By the same nonsensical argument, one could say that the people of Vale are "lucky" because they are now connected to the rest of Guernsey. Or the people of Herm and Sark are "lucky" to have a sea-link to Guernsey.

Is it the fault of Alderney people that Aurigny is, supposedly, losing so much money ? Or does the fault lie with the management of that airline ? Bear in mind that one year the airline is claiming that the Alderney route is losing 900k per year due partially to the high cost of maintaining the Trislanders, that 100k could be saved per annum if the Trislanders were replaced by Dorniers and then the next year the airline are saying that the route will lose 1.4 million !!

Remember that the fares keep on going up and up - whilst passenger numbers are declining. The cheapest return between Southampton and Alderney is 154 quid. Not grossly over-expensive but not cheap either. However, the cheapest return fare between London City, ( the second most expensive airport to fly to in the UK ), and Guernsey is only 150 quid !! In 2015 there were 24000 passengers on the Southampton-Alderney-Southampton route, whilst only just over 22000 on the London City - Guernsey - London City route. The Southampton route had much more flights but using smaller aircraft and thus a much higher occupancy. So which route is losing more money ?

And why no talk by Aurigny of other loss making routes ? Is the Dinard route making money ? It has also been using the Trislanders and Dorniers. But only 2700 people travelled on that route last year - just over ten per cent of the number between Southampton and Alderney.

Quite possibly it is not the Southampton route which is the problem - but the Guernsey one. Only fifty per cent more people travelled on that route and that is way down on previous years. Why ? Because air-fares are too high ? 92 quid being the cheapest return - whilst the cheapest Gatwick return is only 6 quid more, ( and two Summers ago, Aurigny were offering fares as low as 26 quid one way on the Guernsey-Gatwick route and that was after Flybe pulled out ) !! Or is it a lack of availability of seats at certain times and days ?? Is this the fault of the people of Alderney or is the airline to blame ?? Did the people of Alderney choose to buy two second hand and very ineffective and unprofitable old Dorniers ??

In 1985 there were well over 80000 air passengers using Alderney airport, whilst Guernsey had 700000. Roll forward 30 years and Guernsey's passenger traffic has increased by over 27 % to almost 900000, whilst Alderney has declined by 25 % to less than 60000 !!

WHY ???

No... the people of Alderney are not "lucky".

Insider

For an island of its size, I don't think they are served so bad by Aurigny... The loss to the tax-payers of both islands for around 1500 people is massive. If they think they can do better then perhaps its time for Alderney States to take it over and cover the losses?

Alvin

Insider - please read and digest my post above.

donald

These are old aircraft and they did a great job.But now they make far too much noise and would sell badly on the international market!

aldboy

What happened on Monday 18th. No Dornier's in service. Just 2 x Trilander's available to support the Guer/Ald and Southampton flight's. Good job we still have the Trilander's.

Gurnard

Aurigny only have one Dornier that can fly (G-OAUR). This aircraft is undergoing routine maintenance this week and is due back in service next week. Of the two older Dorniers, G-LGIS has gone to Germany early in September while G-SAYE is in the hangar in Guernsey where it has been resting for the past 5-6 weeks. Yes, it's a good job that the Trislanders are still flying - and they've been operating very much to schedule this week!

Biscay

Just forget about aircraft buy a decent passenger vessel that can handle some weather and that's all you need