Weston Airport operator secures permission for upgrade of facilities

Stripe co-founder John Collison and group of investors buy majority stake in business

The operator of Weston Airport has secured permission for an upgrade in terminal facilities at the airport.

Weston Aviation Academy Ltd has secured the go-ahead from South Dublin County Council after Stripe co-founder, John Collison, and a group of investors purchased a majority stake in the business.

The airport site straddles the Dublin-Kildare border and lies to the west of Lucan and south of Leixlip.

In planning documentation lodged with the application, senior planner at Tom Phillips and Associates, Bernard Dwyer, told the council that following the purchase of Weston Airport and the adjacent National Flight Centre in 2021, “the current operators are seeking to modernise and enhance the existing airport facilities”.


“The current proposed upgrades are being sought to create a more coherent, unified facility with improved linkages between the various buildings,” Mr Dwyer said.

He said the proposed improvements to the entrance and the inclusion of the arrivals and departure vestibules “are intended to create a more coherent and rational layout to the ground floor building”.

The senior planner said the proposed ancillary cafe and seating area on the ground floor was intended to complement the existing restaurant and bar facilities on the first floor.

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The planning submission said the National Flight Centre at Weston was one of Europe’s most respected and longest established flight academies.

The existing flight training centre is in a hangar building located close to the terminal building and a “proposed covered walkway between the two buildings will allow for greater comfort for individuals travelling between the two buildings”.

Advancing the case for the application, Mr Dwyer said “the proposed development will enhance the operational efficiency as well as the safety and security of Weston Airport”.

No objections were lodged against the planned upgrade and in giving the terminal building the go-ahead, the South Dublin County Council planning report found that the project would not have an adverse impact on the residential amenity of the nearest dwellings as they are approximately 550m to the east of the site along Cooldrinagh Lane.

Latest accounts for Weston Aviation Academy Ltd show it made a loss of €121,650 in the year to June 30th, 2021 due to Covid-19 air travel restrictions.

It had a shareholders’ deficit of just under €2.67 million at the year end.

The accounts said the airport has “traded successfully” since reopening.

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan is a contributor to The Irish Times