Unique Grade II listed 1928 building constructed in a restrained classical style. Britain's first airport terminal and landmark building design incorporating the world's oldest Air Traffic Control Tower. Government built and operated featuring a rusticated facade with three 1.5-storey arched windows. Entrance leads to the original Booking Hall with 2-storey glass domed atrium. Former Air Traffic Control Tower also open to the public.
Purley Way, Croydon CR0 0XZ
Sun 11am-3.30pm. Regular tours of Croydon Airport Visitor Centre.
Waddon, South Croydon
- Bookshop at location
- Free parking
- Partial disabled
- Refreshments available
- Regularly open to the public at no charge
- Toilets available
AIRPORT HOUSE Airport House, Purley Way was built in 1926. Croydon Airport housed the world’s first international terminal, from the earliest days of air transport until it closed in 1959. It was from here that Amy Johnson made her famous solo flight to Darwin, Australia in 1930.ÿOn her return to Croydon thousands of people lined Purley Way to welcome her back. Dissected by a country road, Plough Lane, traffic was from time to time held up while aircraft were towed across by tractors.ÿThis road was closed and levelled as part of the development for the new aerodrome buildings opened in 1928 which were built in a retardataire Classical style, suggestive of the steam ship terminals that were popular at the time. At the outbreak of World War II the airport closed to civil flying and the RAF occupied the field.ÿFrom here Fighter Command fought the Battle of Britain and later Transport Command operated Dakotas to Europe. In the post-war years small service airlines such as Olley Air Service and Transair continued to operate from the airfield until its closure. Responsible for a number of major technical innovations, such as early aerial direction finding by radio, runway marker lines, and a through baggage hall, it is now open as a visitor centre for aviation. Croydon Heritage website