NATO comes to NATS at Cardiff Airport

Preparations undertaken by the NATS team at Cardiff Airport – air traffic controllers, engineers and support staff – were key to ensuring the safety and security of visitors to the NATO Conference, held at the Celtic Manor Resort in Wales, from 4 to 5 September.

Over 60 world leaders and thousands of dignitaries attended the NATO Conference, the majority of visitors arriving into Cardiff and Bristol airports, while others transited through the other major UK hubs.

Preparation at Cardiff, the main receiving airport, began around nine months ago and was key to ensuring the security and safety of the public and delegates was met while they transited through the airport. A military air traffic control liaison team was located in the air traffic control tower at Cardiff Airport, working with the NATS controllers in support of the air and ground policing operations.

Roger Marsh, General Manager Cardiff Airport said: “A lot of detailed planning has gone into the work by employees at the unit, led by Aidan Cottee, Manager Operations. Externally, we have been working closely with the Airport customer, the Foreign Office, the MoD and South Wales police, to ensure all levels of security and logistics are well planned and efficiently managed.”

NATS, the UK’s leading provider of air traffic services, is well used to working with events such as this, having successfully managed past events such as the recent Commonwealth Games and the G8 Summit in Belfast.

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