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Friends of Doncaster Sheffield Airport (FODSA)


Background

Friends of Doncaster Sheffield Airport (FODSA) was established in February 2005 by a small group of people who had previously been part of  ‘Fly’ Finningley (Finningley locals say YES).  The ‘FLY’ group was formed in 1998 by like minded people who agreed that it was in the best interests of South Yorkshire and the surrounding districts for the old Finningley RAF base to be turned into an international airport.  The group gave support to the planning application, actively collecting many thousands of letters of support for the development.  People from ‘FLY’ group also gave evidence at the Public Inquiry and indeed received praise, for the quality of their evidence, from counsel representing both those for and against the development. The FODSA group is not unique and has followed the footsteps of ‘Friends of Liverpool Airport’ (FOLA) whom they have to thank for help setting up their own organisation.  However, as FOLA point out in their own literature, it is almost unique to have a Friends association, when elsewhere, many other airports have to battle it out with pressure groups.  However, FODSA do aim to be an independent, and non-political organisation and hope to gather members from near and far.

Basis of our activities

FODSA’s aim is to promote ROBIN HOOD AIRPORT at each and every opportunity, through encouraging its preservation, development and improvement.  FODSA also help to inform public opinion by providing advice and information about the airport the airlines that use it and services available from it.  As a society, FODSA brings together like-minded people with a common interest.  At present FODSA hold meetings twice monthly, have regular visits to places of interest and produce a quarterly Newsletter distributed free to members.

How we do this

These broad objectives are put into practice in a variety of ways and we aim to assist the airport to develop its potential in every way possible.  For example, FODSA assist the airport by providing additional hands for distribution of advertising material and in other promotional activity.  In due course we hope that FODSA members will be acting as guides to visiting school parties.  We will also help to keep the airport in the public spotlight by writing to the press and prominent people regarding subjects that affect the airport and it’s operations.

Looking to the future

Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield is the first all new airport in this country since Stansted was built in the late 1960’s.  It promises to be a real success and it is important that the FODSA group grows and adapts alongside the airport.  So if you would like to help promote or simply just keep abreast of developments at this brand new airport then joining FODSA should be a priority.

Meetings

FODSA hold two meetings a month.  They are held in The Duxbury Lecture Theatre, which is the second building on the right hand side of the Airport approach road after turning at the Hayfield Lane traffic lights. Meetings are held on the first and third Wednesday in the month and are open to all members and commence at 7.30pm and usually last about one and a half hours. The meetings provide an opportunity to obtain news on airport activities. There is a good deal of open discussion on matters relating to FODSA and details of the society correspondence.  FODSA occasionally manage to get a member of the airport management team to attend a meeting and update us with the latest news and, if time permits, answer questions from the floor.

Newsletter

FODSA produce a quarterly newsletter containing news, views and articles about the airport and its environs. It also has news about FODSA activities.  Members are encouraged to contribute.

Special events and trips

FODSA have a social secretary and organise outings to places of interest.  In recent times FODSA members have paid visits to London Stansted Airport, John Lennon Airport at Liverpool, Robin Hood Airport Control Tower and the Fire Station, RHADS Fire Station for instruction on Airfield Habitat Management, RAF Hendon, RAF Scampton to see The Red Arrows, Elvington Air Museum, The Imperial War Museum at Duxford and the Royal Air Force Museums at London and Cosford.  All members have the opportunity to take part.  We may also organise occasional charter aircraft trips and maybe take advantage of budget flights available from the airport to various destinations for day trips or weekend breaks.

Website

FODSA has its own website www.fodsa.co.uk  The site is regularly updated and contains all the information about the FODSA group and Robin Hood Airport and the services available from it.  There is up to date news about visiting aircraft, passenger statistics, and photographs and videos of interesting aircraft.  There are links to Robin Hood Airport website and the various airlines that use the airport.  There is also a link to the FOLA website at Liverpool.  The website is proving to be very popular.

Membership

Membership is open to all and the constitution will run from January 1st to December 31st.  Included in the membership is a quarterly newsletter. Membership application forms can be downloaded from the FODSA website or alternatively by emailing imkstones@tiscali.co.uk