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New Operations Director for Bournemouth Airport

Bournemouth Airport owner Regional & City Airports (RCA) has made a strategic appointment to strengthen investment and growth plans at the fast-expanding south coast regional base.

Aviation and logistics professional Tim Etches is the airport’s new Operations Director, responsible for directing all aspects of safety, security, infrastructure, service capability and regulatory compliance. 

His appointment is designed to strengthen RCA’s growth strategy for Bournemouth which includes a 20% rise in passenger numbers this year and an overall doubling of passengers within five years.

As well as announcing new routes from airlines and holiday companies such as Ryanair and TUI, there are plans for an airport business park creating up to 1,900 jobs and dedicated investment in cargo services and facilities for aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO). A new executive lounge is also scheduled to open in 2020. 

Bournemouth Airport Managing Director Stephen Gill said: “We very much welcome Tim to the team at this exciting time. 

“His arrival strengthens our knowledge and leadership as we move forward with our growth strategy, route development and services for carriers, tour operators, passengers and other customers. 

“This is all about stimulating and delivering continued growth in general and business aviation.”

RCA, the airport management division of Rigby Group plc, is the UK’s leading regional airport operator by scale and operations. It acquired Bournemouth Airport in December 2017 and also owns and operates Coventry Airport, Exeter Airport and Norwich Airport. 

Tim, a former Wing Commander in the Royal Air Force, said:“I am thrilled to be on board to help RCA build on Bournemouth’s success as a vital and expanding regional hub for the south of England. I’m highly impressed with the investment that RCA is making in its people, services and infrastructure and I’m keen to play my part in its growth plans.” 

Born and brought up in Throop village, just a few miles from the airport, Tim lives with his wife Helen near Christchurch.

During his RAF career, Tim became a Logistics Operations Director, providing worldwide operational support for all three armed services.

Afterwards, Tim joined Heathrow Airport as Head of Winter Resilience, devising and delivering a £32 million airport snow plan. 

He has also worked at senior levels in the education IT sector and with aviation and defence engineering companies.

Tim was most recently a programme leader at Poole-based defence systems manufacturer Aish Technologies. 

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