For years, rock band Iron Maiden have been bringing heavy metal to fans all over the world, but hopefully frontman Bruce Dickinson’s latest venture will have access to slightly lighter materials.
The commercial airline pilot has set up an aviation firm, which will hopefully create up to 1,000 jobs in South Wales. Cardiff Aviation Limited will benefit from a CEO credited as an established aviation entrepreneur, as well as an excellent location for its commercial property headquarters. The company will operate from a 132,000 square foot hangar on the St Athan Enterprise Zone in the Vale of Glamorgan.
Last year, the announcement that the Welsh Government planned to set up five enterprise zones specialising in a diverse range of sectors was welcomed by the public, as the new range of commercial properties was estimated to create around 10,000 jobs by 2025. Although Cardiff is the financial hub of Wales, high unemployment on the outskirts of the city has begun to pose a significant problem for commercial properties in the city centre, many of which have suffered due to the lower amounts of disposable income available to their customers.
St Athan is one of these enterprise zones, with a number of commercial properties available for hire as long as the companies taking over the lease intend to work within the aviation sector. Classic aircraft company, Hunter Flying have already taken up residence in a commercial property similar to the one Cardiff Aviation Limited will be occupying in the coming months.
Wales’s Business Minister Edwina Hart welcomed the new commercial property proposals, saying: “The Welsh Government has been working closely with Bruce Dickinson and Cardiff Aviation on this exciting project for some time and we are delighted it has come to fruition.
“This is exactly the type of investment needed, which will create hundreds of well-paid skilled jobs in one of our key sectors. We have a strong, dynamic aerospace sector in Wales and this investment will build upon the skilled workforce that already exists in the area, providing a range of career opportunities.
“This is a flagship operation and provides a great start for the new Aerospace Enterprise Zone.”
The company will mainly focus upon maintenance for small and medium sized aircraft, up to and including the Boeing 767 aeroplane. However, the commercial property will also be equipped to offer training facilities and technical support services.
Bruce Dickinson spoke of his experience working alongside the Welsh Government, as well as his excitement about getting his commercial property company up and running. He said; “We’ve been impressed by how pro-active they [the Welsh Government] have been. They’ve really wanted to make this happen, and we’ve experienced a level of enthusiasm and drive that has been a delight to behold.
“We expect to announce the names of our first clients in May, and we’re also currently dealing with expressions of interest from several more major and independent airlines.”
Undoubtedly, this commercial property will provide much-needed employment in the Cardiff area, but Bruce is simply happy to be participating in the area’s long history of aviation.
He said; “South Wales has long had an association with the aircraft industry and I am delighted I am able to play a small part in the continuation of that tradition.”
Do you live in the area? Will this new company provide a much needed boost for commercial properties in the area, or are there now too many similar organisations for the business to flourish?