Derby Airport (England)

  (Redirected from RAF Burnaston)

Derby Airport (also known as Derby Municipal Airport, Burnaston Airport and during the Second World War as RAF Burnaston) was an airport located at Burnaston, Derbyshire, England. Opened in 1938 as a commercial airport serving Derby, it was superseded by East Midlands Airport in the 1960s but continued as an airfield until 1990. The site is now occupied by a Toyota car factory.

Derby Airport
Airport typePublic / Military
OwnerDerby Corporation
LocationBurnaston, Derbyshire, England
Coordinates52°52′20″N 001°33′48″W / 52.87222°N 1.56333°W / 52.87222; -1.56333Coordinates: 52°52′20″N 001°33′48″W / 52.87222°N 1.56333°W / 52.87222; -1.56333
Derby Airport is located in Derbyshire
Derby Airport
Derby Airport
Location in Derbyshire


The airport was created at the suggestion of Captain Roy Harben DFC who persuaded the Air Ministry that a flying school was required. Harben was a veteran of the Royal Flying Corps[1] and he was an expert at teaching people to fly.[2]

The airport served the nearby town (now city) of Derby and was initially owned by Derby Corporation, who acquired the Burnaston House estate for £21,500 in 1936.[citation needed] The airport was opened for training flights in 1938, with the official opening performed by the Secretary of State for Air, Kingsley Wood, in June 1939.[3] Plans to develop the airport for commercial flights were interrupted by the Second World War, during which Burnaston was used by the Royal Air Force (RAF).

RAF Units;[4]

In the postwar era Derby Aviation (later Derby Airways) began operating a number of scheduled services from Derby, the first route being to Jersey in 1953. During this time, Burnaston House served as the airport's terminal building.[citation needed]

Commercial flights ceased in the 1960s when services were transferred to the newly opened East Midlands Airport nearby. The airfield continued to be used by flying clubs until being closed altogether in March 1990 to make way for the construction of a Toyota car plant.[4] Upon the airport's closure, the Jones family established a new 3-runway grass airfield nearby.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Derby Aviation Ltd, PictureThePast, retrieved 8 April 2015
  2. ^ The Complete Flying course by Harben et al, Journal of the Royal Aeronautical Society, Volume 45, Part 2, page 127, retrieved 8 April 2015.
  3. ^ "Derby Airport "A link in world friendship"". Derby Evening Telegraph. 17 June 1939. Retrieved 7 April 2015 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  4. ^ a b "Burnaston (Derby)". Airfields of Britain Conservation Trust. Retrieved 23 September 2021.


  • Stitt, Robert M. (March–April 2001). "Midland Memories: The Life and Times of Derby's Burnaston Airport, Part Two". Air Enthusiast (92): 66–76. ISSN 0143-5450.