Toytown Airport Blues



Flying to Holland from Aberdeen Airport. Its famously called "Toytown Airport" in Christopher Brookmyers novel - "A big boy did it and ran away". Which I bought at the airport...



Thanks to the two least competent terrorists in history - who didnt understand how


  • petrol or gas burns [it needs oxygen]

  • that ram-proof barriers on steel doors are indeed ram-proof.

  • Or why its hard to set Glasgow on fire, as its damp.

  • Or thought that Glaswegians would act like a bunch of handbag toting girlies when given the opportunity to "stick the boot in"


- there are now concrete barriers outside most airports in the UK. Including Aberdeen.



Now dont get me wrong, but as a very frequent traveller through this portacabin, it'd be difficult to actually see how any bomb damage could make this place any worse. But no - thanks to the Itchy and Scratchy school of terrorism, we now have a situation where ALL cars are shuttled through the car park, taxi's drop off there, etc, in order to stop cars getting to the front of the building.



Ah. Aside from motorbikes, Airport taxis, the bus service, and of course those idiots who want to park their cars closer to the airport and pay double. You know - the idiots who think that splashing £60,000 on a range rover will somehow make up for the gaping hole in their lives where morality used to be.



Ten out of ten for effort folks, but zero out of ten for actually building a more secure environment. What you have in fact is something that a "terrorist" (or even suitably motivated pissed-off BA/BAA customer for instance) could easily thwart. However, the other million or so poor sods shuttling through Toytown are just pissed off.



Remember - public transport to and from this airport is virtually non-existent. The Railway line drops at the wrong side of the airport, and its almost impossible to get a taxi from there...



So who's winning here ?



The good news is that the government - that bastion of efficiency, openness and motivation - have finally woken up to the fact that BAA (British Airports Authority) - the owners of most of the UK airports - are actually Spanish, are only interested in building more shops, and dont care if the security queue at Gatwick now actually stretches out of the door. I hope they actually get around to doing something about it this decade though.



Me ? I'd rather fly through Dundee (non BAA controlled, and therefore efficient), and of course I now avoid travelling via Heathrow and Gatwick in the same way a gingerbread man avoids overeaters anonymous..



What I do know is - if you had to send animals in the same conditions as modern air travellers - the animal rights folks would be up in arms.