At the beginning of the week, tower and engineering services transitioned from NATS to ANS, the DFS owned ANSP based at Gatwick.
The original Call for Tender was launched in September 2013 and was published in the Tender Information Service on this site at the time. The 10 year contract was announced in July 2014. A brief court action followed from NATS which was dropped in December that year.
The contract with ANS was signed in December 2014 and the conract will be in place until 2025.
Gatwick is the busiest single runway airport in operation in the World and therefore requires highly skilled tower controllers, engineers to maintain the ATC equipment and MET officers to provide meteorological services.
A total of 33 controllers will be in operation at the Gatwick ATC Tower who are responsible for ATC services up to 4,000ft. Not all the NATS controllers decided to stay on at the airport so some hiring was required with assessment done at the state-of-the-art DFS training facility in Langen, Germany.
After a period of OJT training 6 new experienced controllers have started their active duty in the tower. More hiring will be required in the immediate future.
NATS will continue to provide approach control services for the Airport from their centre in Swanwick.