Conington, otherwise known as Peterborough Business Airport (ICAO: EGSF) is a privately owned airfield located in the UK county of Cambridgeshire, six miles south of Peterborough and twenty miles north-west of Cambridge. The airfield started life as RAF Glatton, built in 1942 and used by the USAF B-17 Flying Fortress bombers throughout WWII. The airfield was mothballed by the RAF after the USAF left at the end of WWII, but it saw activity again with GA flying from the 1970s onwards until Flying Club Conington took over in 2000.
The airfield is equipped with a licensed 987-metre asphalt runway (10/28) with a 100m overshoot and an unlicensed 800-metre concrete runway. JET A-1 and AVGAS fuel, a hard apron area and grass area for helicopter operations provide an excellent base for your GA fleet.
Text courtesy of Just Flight
Conington Airfield is available from Just Flight as a download file. Priced at £7.99 or the equivalent on currency cross rates and will earn you 40 loyalty points to use on your next purchase.
Downloading Conington Airfield is simply a matter of logging in to your Just Flight account, selecting 'Your Orders' whereupon a list of your purchases appears then choose Conington Airfield. Download size is 869MB and takes very little time to download and install.
Just Flight suggest that you have 2GB of hard drive space available but when I checked my file after installation, it was 1.52GB for the whole folder.
Conington Airfield covers what it says in the title, only the confines within the airfield boundary are included. Covering an area of approximately 2.3 km² of photographic scenery, with the A1M to the west of the airfield, and the east coast mainline railway to the east. You will overfly these landmarks on takeoff or approach.
With the airfield having a photographic scenery backdrop, this adds to the realism of the airfield. Conington Airfield has been developed with an accurate feel and blends comfortably within the Orbx – FTX England scenery that I am using. All the main buildings and airport objects have been modelled very well with excellent use of ambient occlusion, giving the buildings that well-worn look. The textures used for the apron and runways are very good with cracks in all the right places. The use of rust staining, cracks, and oil staining gives the airport that regularly used feel.
As for the whole airport confines though, I noticed that there appears to be an anomaly with the ground elevation. There is a deep ridge around the whole perimeter, which makes it look like the airport is in some sort of hollow. As I use FS Global Ultimate Next Generation, I can't be sure that this mesh scenery hasn't greated this elevation anomaly.
There is a certain amount of seasonal textures, although the airfield itself does not appear to get any snow in winter.
In January though, the airfield is surrounded by snow and is classed as a Hard Winter. The other niggling point is that the custom trees and grasses do not seem to change with the seasons, giving them an artificial feel to the realism of the airfield. These seasonal screenshots were taken with the custom grasses enabled.
The custom grasses on the other hand are well done and add that special touch to the area surrounding the clubhouse, apron and runway.
The buildings and airport objects have been modelled to a high standard and are indicative of the real world buildings at Conington Airfield. It is obvious that there has been a high degree of on-site investigation taken up by the team, including hours of photography and notes taken. The buildings are accurately placed, as are the fuel bowsers and airport objects. It is nice to see photographic textures used on the buildings but they are lacking any light emission at night or early morning, which would have added a little more realism to them in my opinion.
Situated between the two runways is Rose Court Farm, which has also been modelled by the team.
Runway 10/28 is equipped with LITAS lighting (low intensity two colour approach slope system). This is similar to the PAPI/VASI lighting system, with two red lights indicating that you are too low and two white lights indicating that you are too high on approach. They are configured for a 3.25° approach slope.
As I mentioned earlier, the lighting on and around the buildings is generally good but it would have been an even nicer touch if the windows emitted some form of light at night. In addition, as I am a bit of a 'nit-picker', I would have liked the actual light fittings to have night light textures also.
A 20 page user manual is included in the download, which explains all the user needs to know, from installation to using the control panel to configure your settings for the type of scenery you are using, also whether you want to enable the 3D grasses. There is also diagrams depicting the circuit patterns. With the airfield being surrounded by villages, these circuit pattern diagrams are essential.
At a mere £7.99, Conington Airfield is fine if you are looking for a simple, nicely constructed, small airfield to base yourself. If you are looking for the 'all singing all dancing' airport, the likes we have seen from some other scenery developers then you have a choice to make. Conington Airfield comes up short when it comes to eye candy such as people, static aircraft or indeed animals at the farm. It would be a good starting point however, if you have just started out on an air-hauler career and need a small base. It is your money after all.
Performance using my system was excellent. There was no discernible downgrade in performance and no stuttering. My frame rates are locked at 31 within the sim as always and this was achieved throughout my time flying around Conington Airfield. I would think it is possible to run Conington Airfield at max settings..
As I mentioned earlier, there are quite a few things that stand out for me, not least the lack of any form of life at the airfield. No static aircraft, where in reality Conington is a very well used and busy little airfield. The lack of people or animals. This would have added some sense of life at the airfield in my opinion. The ridge around the airfield also detracts from the aesthetics of the area and finally, the lack of light emission from any of the windows at night.
Flight Simulator X (Acceleration, Gold), FSX: Steam Edition & Prepar3D v3/v4;
2.0GHz or any Dual Core;
1GB graphics card;
Windows 10 / 8 / 7 / Vista / XP (32-bit or 64-bit); and
2GB hard drive space.
The specifications of the computer on which the review was conducted are as follows:
Intel i9, 7900X CPU, 10 Core, 4.3GHz;
Intel i7 – 6700K, 4GHz 'Skylake' CPU;
Asus Strix GeForce GTX970 OC 4GB;
32GB Corsair Vengeance, 3200MHz, DDR4;
Windows 10, (64bit); and
Lockheed Martin P3D Version 18.104.22.16841.
Additional Major Add-ons. Additional major add-ons include: Orbx FTX Scenery; FSGlobal Ultimate Next Generation; Active Sky Next; Active Sky Cloud Art; SPADnext; FSUIPC+ WIDEFS.
If you want simplicity, this is for you. If you want an airfield with all the "bells and whistles" I feel you should look elsewhere. I do not want to sound disrespectful to the team that produced Conington Airfield, but for me it does not quite "cut the mustard". We are so used to seeing extremely busy airfields on the market that I was disappointed when I installed Conington Airfield. It is devoid of life and feels like the airfield that time forgot.