jwhite9185 From United Kingdom, joined May 2007, 991 posts, RR: 2 Posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 6127 times:
A day trip to MAN
My next trip report will take in a day trip up to MAN. It doesn't contain any flights, although it will take in an airport and a fair bit of spotting so hopefully will still provide some interest.
Nearly every summer I make a trip up to Manchester, as it is one of the most spotter friendly airports in the country. Back in the old days it used to involve flying up on either BMI or BA and a stay in the Radisson SAS (now Radisson Blu), however these days I tend to make the 3 hour odd drive as if the famous Manchester weather looks a bit dodgy, the plans can be changed fairly easily.
I'll start off with a few pictures of interest from previous visits:
I was quite disappointed to be on this one at the time as I wanted to try out the A32x - although I'm glad I got one final chance on the 737 classic now.
View from Radisson window at approx. 7:30am
Followed shortly after by this classic VS
Still the only A321 I’ve been on! This one is now with Turkish Airlines.
More views from the Radisson a year later
It was between my visits in 2003 and 2004 the Concorde moved in
Another wet morning!
Rare visitor to MAN. VS used A343's on their service to BGI for the summer 2009 season only.
From the Airport pub - not the best place for photography as there’s a lot of fences in the way
An interesting one
Another new exhibit at the time
One for Gabriel!
On to this years story then. I wanted to leave early so I could catch the last few of the heavies departing for the US. Previous trips had taken around 3 to 3h30min from where I live in Surrey, round the M25, M40 and the M6 to the car park at T2 MAN.
Well it wouldn't be a proper trip report without a legroom shot...
...and a route map!
Off stand: 06:18
As expected after a 3-hour or so drive, I pulled into the car park at T2 Manchester. After a brief look around here, it was through the walkways to level 13 of the T1 carpark. Why not park in T1? Well then I’d have no reason to visit T2!
T2 Check in – pretty quiet
Then it was off through the skylink to the car park at T1
Passing the Radisson Blu on the way – one of the best spotting hotels in the world?
Taken at the station – showing just how close the hotel is to the action
Overview of the bus station
And some views from the car park at T1
The now famous shot
One for CrimsonNL
New tower going up – hopefully should be finished by next years visit.
This one sat here for a good 20 minutes – the ground crew seemed to be having a few problems disconnecting the tow bar.
jwhite9185 From United Kingdom, joined May 2007, 991 posts, RR: 2 Reply 1, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 6129 times:
Followed by the rare MON757
Leaving T2 pretty empty. I took this as my cue to make a move
VS trying to create their own version of the new BA advert?
Current tower and office block
After about 45 minutes it was time to go and explore again. I paid a brief visit to T3 enroute to the aviation shop in the arrivals area of T1.
T1 Check in – again pretty quiet
I preferred the old way over to T3.
Flybe wins the competition for having the busiest check in area at MAN today. Hardly surprising considering the amount of flights they have out of MAN these days.
And the Aviation shop in the arrivals area of T1 – but sadly, nothing took my fancy today.
Then it was time to head down to the station and go into the city for some lunch. One of the major changes at MAN over the years is the near total elimination of all the shops landside. Another one of my favorite spotting locations was the food court that linked T1 to T3. Having not travelled from MAN since the works have been carried out I'm not totally sure if the area is still there but I'm led to believe it is? Although I’m willing to be corrected on that one.
Back through the very hot skyway – not helped by ALL the moving walkways being out of action.
Station view – not much happening here either!
City of Manchester Stadium/Etihad Stadium as seen from the train – originally built for the 2002 Commonwealth games
One of the areas regenerated in the last few years. When I first visited the city in 1999 this was just a fairly derelict looking park with a dodgy looking ferris wheel and some 1970’s looking buildings around it
And a quick stop at Starbucks!
Then it was time to head back to the airport… otherwise id be charged the 24 hour rate in the car park – and that wouldn’t be cheap!
Once we were approaching the airport, I noticed a MON A321 fly over… and as it was departing in this direction, this meant that they were using the 05’s for landing and departing rather than the 23’s. This pleased me as in all my previous visits, I hadn’t been able to see any action from this direction.
Heading back to T2
Overview of The Station and T1 car park
Then, £20 poorer, I made the short drive to the runway viewing park:
Then I spent the next 3 or so hours taking pics of nearly everything in sight!
You can get pretty close to the action here…
Uh-Oh, something’s not right here…
Luckily, this passed without much incident.
Shame the fence got in the way of this one…
Some ‘roadwork’s’ seemed to be going on this afternoon.
A couple of the viewing park’s residents
One thing about MAN is that there are still quite a few smaller/private jets around too
Hello, what’s this that’s just turned up…
Quite like this one, makes a change from the all sky blue. Although not a patch on the livery seen earlier in this thread.
Operating a charter for somebody I believe
Not seen one of these before. The tail logo looks a bit MS Paint though.
One for OA260
One thing that I thought of was that I cant see any way that BD/BA can have so many London Shuttle’s once the merging is complete. Nearly all flights seem to be within half an hour or so of each other. Either some rescheduling needs to take place or some flights dropped.
I wasn’t aware this one still carried this livery
Pretty sure this one wasn’t operating the LHR shuttle as I saw it earlier in the day parked up at T1
jwhite9185 From United Kingdom, joined May 2007, 991 posts, RR: 2 Reply 5, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 6008 times:
Did a bit of tweaking and the end got cut off:
Turns out it was a return for the TOM 737 that had departed around half and hour previously. After the fire crew had a good look around once it had left the runway, it was followed back to stand.
And it was shortly after this my camera battery died, and I started the long journey back down South. As I mentioned earlier, this wasn’t the traditional type of TR, but hope it was of interest to at least a few people.
Normal service will be resumed in a couple of weeks!
Quoting OA260 (Reply 2): Always nice to see the spotting trips and believe it or not I have never been to that spotting park at MAN. Something still on my to do list !
Not to be missed, although from what i remember its a bit of pain to get to without a car.
Quoting MH017 (Reply 3): Guess, you were the 1st to reveal Thomson's new livery (?)
Im sure there were some pics on here when it was first rolled out about a month ago.
Quoting Delboy (Reply 4): Some nice old photos took me back a bit they did.
That was the plan!
Quoting Delboy (Reply 4): This isn't a critisism but the photos look a little soft, it could be the resolution you have to reduce them to to post on here. What camera were you using?
Yeah, id been struggling all day with getting decent pics - colours look a bit vivid for my liking too, but tried to mess with colour settings, different filters etc but didn't have much success. Its a Canon 550d. Still fairly new to the dSLR world so hopefully they should improve with experience.
mainMAN From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 2074 posts, RR: 6 Reply 10, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 5749 times:
Excellent James, thank you. MAN is always good to pass a little time, or even a day when you've travelled so far. May I suggest you park your car next time at Heald Green, Gatley or East Didsbury stations and get a local train to the airport.......every 30 mins off peak service.
I'm pretty sure BA and BD schedules will be harmonised or reduced in time. Don't forget that BA 737s are going to Gatwick (I'm sure you know this!) and some BD 320s are operating for LH to FRA.
The food court between T1 and T3 is now gone and I'm not sure precisely how the area has been incorporated into the new terminal layouts. I always thought it was better when the two terminals were linked and also when there were shops to wander round before security. But, MAN discovered that passengers preferred to get security out of the way as soon as possible, and that they preferred to be cynically directed through aisles and aisles of retail shite, before arriving at their gates. Terminal 1 is dreadful for this. The last time I passed through T1, just 3 weeks ago, my fellow traveller said that "this makes me even more determined NOT to buy anything" !
jwhite9185 From United Kingdom, joined May 2007, 991 posts, RR: 2 Reply 14, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 5201 times:
Quoting mainMAN (Reply 10): May I suggest you park your car next time at Heald Green, Gatley or East Didsbury stations and get a local train to the airport.......every 30 mins off peak service.
Yeah, i did see somewhere that this was possible... old habits really! And the fact that MAN is pretty much straight off the motorway and into the car park.
Quoting mainMAN (Reply 10): The food court between T1 and T3 is now gone and I'm not sure precisely how the area has been incorporated into the new terminal layouts. I always thought it was better when the two terminals were linked and also when there were shops to wander round before security. But, MAN discovered that passengers preferred to get security out of the way as soon as possible, and that they preferred to be cynically directed through aisles and aisles of retail shite, before arriving at their gates. Terminal 1 is dreadful for this. The last time I passed through T1, just 3 weeks ago, my fellow traveller said that "this makes me even more determined NOT to buy anything" !
Thats a shame. I was under the impression that everything was how it was back in the day apart from security being moved forward a bit. I remember back in 1999 - i very first caught a glimpse of the short lived Virgin Sun from there while waiting for my BD flight back to LHR on one of their old 735's.
Quoting signol (Reply 11): That will be the one operated by Suckling Airways to operate MAN-NWI and some others
Yeah i figured it was probably one of their franchises. Although my initial thoughts were that it was a Loganair. It what only when i saw the pics on the screen when i got home i saw it said Suckling Airways on the side.