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With over 80 years in Aviation we have a history we are proud of .

Pre-war

Westair has been involved in aviation since the 1930s when it was started by Walter “Wally” Westoby pictured on the right here.

Wally started his career as an engineer on lifts for coal mines.

Later he would start out as mechanic on aircraft before becoming a pilot himself.

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At the time we were flying out of an aerodrome based at Blackpool’s Stanley Park; some of the aircraft hangars still exist at the Zoo as part of the elephant enclosure.

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World War II

During the Second World War Wally was sent to Canada, teaching Navigation for the RAF. There he flew Avro Ansons like the one pictured below. By the time Walter left the RAF in 1947 the airport had moved to Squires Gate, where it is today. Shortly afterwards Denis Westoby, Wally’s son, started to fly.

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Post-war

After the War, Westair began operating pleasure flights in De Havilland Rapides giving tourists visiting Blackpool a chance to see Blackpool Tower from the air.

In a time before low cost air travel, UK tourists would spend their Summer holidays in Blackpool and Westair would offer the opportunity for people to fly in an aeroplane which, at the time, was an extremely rare experience. The Rapides seated 10 passengers and would give trips around the tower and back.

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60's

Westair became one of the first authorised Cessna dealers in Europe, using the flying school as a means of teaching new owners how to fly their new aircraft. As well as supplying new Cessna aircraft, Denis was operating as the Earl of Sefton’s personal pilot. Trips often involved flying into small grass strips on racecourses so that Lord Sefton could watch his horses run.

Denis also flew a great variety of celebrities on charters, from famous comedians, Eric Morcambe and Tony Hancock, to sporting celebrities such as golfer, Arnold Palmer and jockey, Lester Piggot.

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Some of our famous customers...

Earl of Sefton
Pele
Tony Hancock
Arnold Palmer
Michael Owen
Lestor Piggott
Les Dawson
Alan Shearer
Eric Morecambe
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70s and 80s

In 1974 Denis’ son, John, got his pilot’s licence. John initially started instructing and then moved on to flying a 401 for Johnson’s cleaners.

Westair also operated a charter service and a regular service in a King Air to Stansted to give people in the area a quick route down to the capital.

Aviation History

90s

The 90s saw the company operate a number of corporate aircraft with John Westoby as Chief Pilot. These included Beechcraft Kingairs and the Citation Bravo pictured.

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The New Millenium

At the turn of the Century, Westair began to specialise in providing operational support and crew for corporate aircraft. These included group owned corporate jets. Westair also started providing crew to BAE Systems, flying regular services from Walney Airfield in Cumbria across the country in King Airs.

In 2008 Jonathan, John’s son, became the fourth generation of commercial pilot in the Westoby family.

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2010 to present

Over the past decade we have moved to our new state of the art Hangar facility and continue to expand our Flight School, now teaching pilots for their commercial licence and instrument rating.

We also have a number of simulators including our very own fixed based Boeing 737-800 simulator. Jonathan is currently a First Officer on a Boeing 737 but regularly returns to instruct and examine for the Flying School.

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