Virgin Australia Group today announced it has been selected by Tamworth Regional Council as the preferred airline group to establish a world-class pilot training centre in the New South Wales city.
Virgin Australia Group CEO and Managing Director, John Borghetti said: “We are delighted to have been chosen by Tamworth Regional Council, and for the Virgin Australia Group to establish an Aviation Centre of Excellence. Our industry is currently facing a global pilot shortage and this world-class facility will develop a pipeline of skilled pilots funnelling into the Virgin Australia Group and other airlines around the world,” Mr Borghetti said.
Tamworth Regional Council Mayor Cr Col Murray said: “Few regional airports boast facilities the calibre of those in Tamworth so we have been in the very fortunate position of attracting more than one proposal to deliver commercial pilot training services at our airport.
“The Virgin Australia Group has put forward a very compelling proposition, one that makes best use of our facilities and offers a sustainable return for Tamworth Regional Airport.
“While details of our agreement will be released in due course, we remain impressed with the innovative approach taken by the Virgin Australia Group and their genuine desire to work in partnership with Council, our airport and the business community.
“It is thanks to visionary community leaders of the past that today we can offer such well-established pilot training facilities. It is now time for Tamworth Regional Council’s vision, along with the global vision of the Virgin Australia Group, for Tamworth Regional Airport to grow and become a world-class Aviation Centre of Excellence,” Cr Murray said.
Virgin Australia Airlines Group Executive, Rob Sharp said: “We’d like to thank the Tamworth Regional Council for supporting our proposal and we look forward to working closely with them to finalise our agreement,” Mr Sharp said.
The Virgin Australia Group and Tamworth Regional Council will provide more information on the Virgin Australia Group establishing an Aviation Centre of Excellence in the coming months.