Researchers from Robert Gordon University (RGU) in Aberdeen will host a photo exhibition at Benbecula Airport from 4th to 8th October 2016 in order to gather opinion on the social and cultural importance of the airport to the local community.
Photos from the exhibition, which will feature both historical and more recent images of Benbecula Airport, will be used to invite participants to share their memories and stories of the airport with Aberdeen Business School researchers Dr Graeme Baxter and Lyndsay Bloice.
Benbecula Airport, which currently operates passenger flights to Glasgow and Stornoway, has a long military history. A Royal Air Force base was established there in World War Two and in the 1950s – during the Cold War – the airfield became the control centre for Hebrides Range.
The event is part of a larger research project with European funding on the importance of small airports.
SPARA 2020 (Smart Peripheral and Remote Airports) brings together partners from Scotland, Ireland, Sweden, Norway and Australia in order to deliver increased innovation within the public service provision of airports.
Lyndsay Bloice said: “We are looking at the social and cultural importance of small, remote airports to their local communities and will be studying small airports across Northern Europe, in Scotland, Ireland, Norway and Sweden.
“We’re looking forward to hosting the exhibition and hearing from the local community about their memories of Benbecula Airport and their thoughts on the part the airport plays in their everyday lives.”
The exhibition at Benbecula is one in a series of similar events. Previous exhibitions, held in Kirkwall Airport in Orkney, Donegal Airport in Ireland, Sundsvall Timrå Airport in Sweden, and on the Isle of Skye, have drawn hundreds of participants who have shared their memories and thoughts on current services.
For more information about the research, or to register interest in being interviewed, please contact Lyndsay Bloice (01224 263 991) or Dr Graeme Baxter (01224 263 889).
Photograph: Benbecula Airport pictured during the Second World War (© Crown Copyright: IWM)