Aerozone welcomes schoolchildren on reopening day

London Stansted's popular Aerozone has welcomed schoolchildren back for the first time in over 19 months.

The award-winning education centre hosted 24 children from Newport Primary, Saffron Walden, on Wednesday (Nov 24).

This is the first time the centre has allowed visitors since it was forced to close in March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

During the day, children participated in STEM activities, learned about the history of the airport, and heard from firefighters, security officers and airline crew about the exciting career opportunities at the airport.

Operations Director, Nick Millar, made a surprise visit to the Aerozone to welcome the first school through the doors. He said:

“We are delighted to be reopening the Aerozone after restrictions prevented us from sharing this fantastic facility with our visitors.

“Having our first school party back enjoying the activities at the centre is such a significant milestone for the airport as the Aerozone forms such an integral part of our relationship and interaction with the local community.

“Over the last 18 months, the aviation industry has undoubtedly faced its toughest period, and many aspects of our work and daily life have been changed quite dramatically, but the Aerozone remains our flagship community project here at Stansted and represents a long-term commitment to our community.

“Our recovery has been encouraging as customer confidence grows, and we can continue our work to inspire the next generation to consider the varied apprenticeships and career opportunities within aviation by visiting the Aerozone, particularly those living in areas close to the airport, is a vital part of our community work.”

Molly-May Walbanke, a teacher from Newport Primary, said:

“The Aerozone was brilliant; the children enjoyed seeing the planes and doing all the activities. The speakers were excellent and inspired the kids to get involved. We are so fortunate that the Aerozone is so close to us.”

Since its opening in 2015, the Aerozone has welcomed over 17,000 visitors.

Through a variety of activities, the learning hub aims to boost STEM skills and encourage young people to consider an aviation career after leaving school, college, or university.

Airport staff participate in talks with visiting groups about working at the airport and pursuing a career in aviation.

There’s also a spectacular viewing platform, where they can watch planes take off and land, and see some of the jobs that they have learned about in action.

In order to ensure safety, COVID measures have been enhanced, including the addition of social distancing signage and sanitising stations, while limiting the number of visitors to each session.

To arrange a school visit, email stn_communityrelations@stanstedairport.com