Air Transport World

'A gleaming city': Farnborough's sponsors back up their confidence in the show's continued growth with brand-new facilities and television.(Farnborough, England)

London--The Society of British Aerospace Cos. (SBAC) is bullish as this month's sold-out Farnborough air show (Sept. 2-8) opens. But the long-term future of the event remains clouded in uncertainty.

The U.K. Ministry of Defence, which owns the Defence Research Agency (formerly the Royal Aircraft Establishment) site 40 mi. southwest of London, where the show has been held since 1948, is selling the airfield as part of government cost reductions. SBAC has a promise that it can hold the 1998 and 2000 shows there.

After that, it hopes to deal with the new owner, whoever that may be, to stay at Farnborough into the new century. SBAC has found a dozen other sites within a 70-mi. radius of London unsuitable.

Mike Turner, chairman of British Aerospace Civil Aircraft and the current SBAC president, said: "We are working closely with a number of government departments to ensure the show goes on for many years. …

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