"Daedalus" has been an active government-owned civilian airfield at Lee-on-Solent since 1996, when the Royal Navy (RN) ended military operations as a RN Air Station. Two government departments - the Homes and Communities Agency, and the Department for Transport - each own different parts of the airfield. Both departments support the regeneration strategy to retain and develop the operational airfield as a centre for aviation, aerospace and marine sector businesses and activities.
General public access to the airfield is not permitted, however it is possible to visit the tenant organisations located at Daedalus by arrangement. This page is intended to provide insight into the variety of aviation activites "Inside Daedalus" beginning with an on-line video of the General Aviation Activities at Daedalus, Lee-On-Solent Airfield
On the east side of the airfield, alonsgside Broom Way, are:
Hangar A. This is used by Hampshire Constabulary to store vehicles are used during the working week for advanced driver training on the currently disused runway 17/35. This hangar was in aviation use by an aviation engineering company when SEEDA (predecessor of HCA) took on ownership of this part of the airfield in 2006.
Hangar B is leased by Lee Flying Association, has a clubhouse and provides hangarage for some of the privately owned light aircraft that make up the airfield's "Resident Fleet". Just as a marina provides berths to it's 'market' an airfield needs to provide space and hangarage for resident and visiting aircraft which are serviced, repaired, painted, cleaned, built, insured, financed etc as part of the £1.6 billion UK General Aviation sector. Join Lee Flying Association to Support The Airfield.
Hangars East, South Apron is a large aircraft parking area ("apron" in aviation-speak) surrounded by hangars C, D and E.
Hangar C is the base for a marine company specialising in Rigid Inflatable Boats (RIBs). Next door part of the parking apron is used by a local road haulage company to temporarily store all manner of goods that are being handled for clients. Never know what might be there - replica WW1 tanks anyone?
Hangar D is used by Zenith Driver Training with a large part of the apron used for vehicle storage and also HGV driver training.
Hangar E is used as vehicle maintenance workshop by Vision Travel, who also store various coaches on the parking apron.
Hangars F and G are used to hangar more of the resident light aircraft fleet
The northern aircraft parking apron on east side is used by Daedalus Aviation Fuel Services and local flying school Phoenix Aviation who park their aircraft, which are used for flying lessons, air experience flights (great gift idea), and rental flights by qualified private pilots. Surrounding the northern apron are:
Hangar H which is leased by an aviation company wishing to erect new premises nearby to establish aircraft design/production operations as soon as local consditions permit.
Hangar J is used by Portsmouth Naval Gliding Centre to store various ground vehicles and equipment required for gliding operations.
Hangar K is currently empty and under consideration by HCA for refurbishment to put back into aviation use after several years 'out of service'.
Hangar M is where Solent Microlight Group members hangar their microlight aircraft and have their clubhouse.
Hangar "N" (not formally identified as such) this former vehicle maintenance hangar is used privately for storage (non-aviation)
Hangar O is home to several light aircraft owned by members of Portsmouth Naval Gliding Centre
Hangar "Y" houses two more locally based light aircraft.
Moving over on the west side of the airfield:
Hangar P is home to aircraft restoration projects undertaken by Crofton Aero Services.
Hangar R home to several light aircraft that are owned and operated, (built even) by local people.
Hangar T is leased to Britten-Norman and provides hangarage for company/client aircraft
Hangar U is leased to Britten-Norman and when repairs are complete may provide provides hangarage or engineering support for company/client aircraft.
There are two large "Bellman" hangars on the west side - two others that were in between them were destroyed by Stuka attack during the Battle of Britain. One is used by the Portsmouth Naval Gliding Centre to store its gliders, motorgliders, aerotow aircraft and various ground equipment, with the other being used by Britten-Norman for maintenance/upgrade of client aircraft.
On the south side of the airfield and in aviation use are:
The large hangar facility constructed in 2007-8 by the Martime Coastguard Agency. This is a world-class state-of the-art facility hosting a Search and Rescue Helicopter unit provided under contract to MCA by CHC Helicopters.
Dunning Hangar, one half of which leased to Marine Concepts, with the other half in use for aircraft (BN Defender) production by Britten-Norman who also operate the airfield itself, including the Control Tower building and airfield fire station.
The worlds only Hovercraft Museum - an extensive collection of over 60 hovercraft - is also located on the South side, adjacent to the slipway which affords access to/from the airfield. The remainer of the site is a the former technical and accomodation area of the former Royal Navy Air Station, which supports a number of local businesses on an 'interim letting strategy' whilst plans for redevelopment of this area are progressed.
Outline Planning Applications which cover the whole of the Daedalus Airfield location have been submitted to the local councils and are, as at Dec 2011, currently being processed. Separate planning applications have been submitted for new road junctions at Broom Way and Gosport Road to provide new accesses.Community activities/opportunties:
Local Aviation History with the Gosport Aviation Society
Join Lee Flying Association to Support Your Local Airfield
Private Pilot Licence Training, Aircraft Rental and Trial Flights available from Phoenix Aviation
Try Gliding with the Portsmouth Naval Gliding Centre
Sample Microlighting with Solent Microlight Group
Floatplane flights on the Solent - The Seaplane Club