News story

Transport Secretary opens state-of-the-art aviation training centre

New facilities will provide training for hundreds of new pilots and cabin crew,

Plane departure board.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin today (14 October 2015) officially opened a new state-of-the-art training facility at Gatwick Airport.

The new Gatwick Academy will be the main aviation training hub for all easyJet pilots and crew based in the UK and across Europe.

The site opened as easyJet announced a drive to recruit over a thousand cabin crew and pilots over the next 12 months. Many of them will be trained at the Gatwick facility, which will also boost the skills of the existing workforce - allowing the airline to promote 200 cabin crew to cabin managers and 140 co-pilots to captains.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said:

The world-class reputation of British pilots and crews has helped build our thriving aviation industry and this training facility will help underpin that success.

Airline pilots and crew are now able to apply for financial support as part of the government’s commitment to create 3 million more apprenticeships across the country. I welcome easyJet’s announcement today that they will double their number of female trainee pilots and make sure that careers in aviation are open to all.

As part of the visit the Transport Secretary was given a tour of the facilities by easyJet chief executive Carolyn McCall before a short ceremony formally opening the site. The facilities include a cabin simulator, evacuation slide and fire training rig.

In addition to new recruits, around 40% of easyJet’s existing crew of 7,000 staff will also use the new site to complete their annual training by the end of the 2015.

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Published 14 October 2015