Life in the Fast Lane

Whilst researching all the various companies which are based at Goodwood, I came across Elite Helicopters, who are based at Goodwood Aerodrome, and provide an excellent service anywhere in Britain, and Western Europe.

Clients use them for business, because over shorter distances (say up to 100 miles) Helicopters are the most efficient way of getting there, but many people now use them for leisure, including getting to Shoots, going Skiing, and taking them to holiday destinations, so the range  of uses has increased, with the added bonus that they save so much time.

Agusta 109 Outside Goodwood House

Augusta 109 Parked Outside of Goodwood House

Elite Helicopters was founded in the Autumn of 1995 by Glenn Curtis and Sharon Douglas when an opportunity arose to establish a Helicopter Operation at White Waltham Airfield on the outskirts of Maidenhead in Berkshire.  In 2001 the Company expanded its breadth of operation when it took over both the Helicopter Charter Operation and Flight Training School at Goodwood Aerodrome in West Sussex from Stephenson Aviation and enabling Elite Helicopters to provide extensive coverage throughout the South and Central UK.  The company has continued to grow in size and reputation and is now proud to hold ‘Preferred Operator’ status with Goodwood Estates.

Robinson R44 G-SPYS

The Single Engine Robinson R44 and below, The Eurocopter AS350


The Company looks after and operates an extensive fleet of Helicopters on both Air Charter and Flight Training, the aircraft range from the basic training Robinson R22, through the Single Engine charter fleet of the Robinson R44, JetRanger, LongRanger, Eurocopter EC120 and Eurocopter AS350.  The Twin Engine fleet is made up of the Agusta 109 Grand & Power Twin helicopter types which enable the company to carry our full IFR operations.  Elite specialises in the management and operation of these aircraft for the individual owners taking care of all the day to day business associated with the ownership and operation of helicopters.

2 Helicopters Robinson R22s

Two of the Robinson R22s used for flight training, trial lessons and self fly hire

Elite also have the capability and equipment required to set up and operate Temporary Heliport Operations at special events, including the provision of a full Air Traffic Control Service.  In 1998 Elite Helicopters secured the contract for the operation of the Heliport at Farnborough International and has continued to be contracted to provide these services ever since.  Elite also run all Ground Operations at the bi-annual Helitech Exhibition held at Duxford, runs a heliport for their own operations in connection with the British Grand Prix and ran a Heliport to provide services during the 2012 Olympics.

The personnel at Elite Helicopters take pride in providing a total flying service for both private and corporate clients, offering a Charter service for business travel, corporate entertaining, aerial photography and filming, special occasions, and special events transfers.  Elite offer a personal helicopter charter service to any destination within the U.K. (subject to landing site approval), and take pride in the fact that a complete package including the reservation of hotels, restaurants, hire or chauffeur driven cars can all be arranged by the operations team.

Flights to the major sporting events, such as the Festival of Speed, Glorious Goodwood, the Goodwood Revival Meeting, Epsom Derby, Royal Ascot, and the British Grand Prix are speciality operations that Elite Helicopters major in.  In 2004 they peaked with an amazing 630 passengers being transferred to the British Grand Prix at Silverstone and then returned in the afternoon, they achieved this utilising some 15 helicopters and conducting the flights to and from a specially set up licensed heliport at Upper Aynho Grounds near Banbury.

Fleet of Helicopters

A selection of the aircraft Elite Helicopters use for flying passengers to the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.  

These are parked at their shuttle site at Aynho, just off the M40.

Elite also organise action packed Corporate Flying Days that incorporate a combination of aerial activities such as Helicopter Trial Lessons, Light Aircraft Lessons, Tiger Moth and Aerobatic flights.  These days are unbeatable and create a lasting impression of excitement and enjoyment for both guests and hosts alike.

The Company also operate Helicopter Pleasure Flying at a wide range of events, from small village fetes to country shows, from agricultural shows to air shows, offering a completely self contained service, with trained and highly experienced personnel, both on the ground and in the air.

All of the Company’s pilots are highly experienced in Aerial Photography and Filmwork.  A variety of aircraft are utilised on these tasks including the Bell JetRanger and LongRanger helicopters.  Air/Ground communications are also available for use between film crew and Director to save on both cost and flight time.

Elite Helicopter Bell 206 Long Ranger G-LIMO

The Bell 206 LongRanger G-LIMO used for Aerial Photography and Filmwork

Their helicopters are available for charter seven days a week, 52 weeks a year and are able to provide a quotation or take a short notice booking at almost any time.

Whatever requirements their clients may have for utilising helicopters they are able to provide an efficient and professional service to cater for all their needs.

It really is the preferred ‘Way to travel’.  If you are inspired to use any of their diverse services, below are all their contact details and say that The Vintage Magazine introduced you:-


Head  Office:   Goodwood, West Sussex.

Address:   Hangar 3, Good Aerodrome, Chichester, West Sussex PO18 0P

T:         01243 530165

F:         01243 539921



Contacts:   Sharon Douglas, Director

Glenn Curtis, Director

Will Fanshawe, Head of Flight Operations

Aileen McGovern, Operations Manager

Bill Leach, Commercial Manager

Ingo Prentl, Chief Pilot & Chief Flying Instructor



Friday, October 26th, 2012