L3Harris Technologies has officially opened a new $100 million London-based training centre for commercial airline pilots.
The facility, located close to London Gatwick Airport, was opened by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales and the launch was attended by accompanied by the Aviation Minister, Baroness Vere of Norbiton, and leading figures from the UK aviation industry.
The centre employs 350 people and is designed to meet the increasing airline demand for new pilots and to address the worldwide shortage of commercial pilots. The facility also designs, develops and builds the company’s leading RealitySeven Full Flight Simulator (FFS).
The training centre is already seeing strong demand, with 15 international airlines training pilots at the site.
The facility will also support the company’s Airline Academy cadet training programmes, which train commercial pilots for many of the world’s largest airlines.
During the official opening, The Prince of Wales met young people who are soon to start on the Prince’s Trust Flying Scholarship, which was created by L3Harris as part of the RAF100 legacy.
The scholarship was launched earlier this year and has the potential to support three young people each year for the next ten years. It will deliver a training course at L3Harris Airline Academy in Bournemouth on single-engine aircraft. The scholarship aims to support L3Harris’ and the Prince’s Trust’s shared goal of increasing diversity within the aviation industry.
His Royal Highness also met engineers and production apprentices who develop and manufacture the company’s commercial simulation devices. The Prince of Wales himself flew an L3Harris RealitySeven A320 simulator.
Baroness Vere of Norbiton said, “This training centre will boost the local economy, helping our aviation sector continue to cement its place as one of the world’s very best. As we seek to build a fairer society, improving access to pilot training goes hand in hand with our work to increase diversity and female representation across the industry.”
“We are honoured to have The Prince of Wales, Baroness Vere and other distinguished guests join us to mark the official opening of our new London Training Center. Our investment in this facility reflects our confidence in growth opportunities in the U.K. and the aviation industry, illustrated clearly by the demand for new airline pilots across the world,” said Alan Crawford, President, L3Harris Commercial Aviation Solutions.