Two of the planes of the old Hellinikon airport to be rebuilt – The Cypriot businessman who bought them and what he told NouPou about his plans for them.

It seems that two of the planes of the old Ellinikos airport will get a new life . It is a BAC 1-11, in the colors of the Greek flag, one of the few aircraft of this type in the world, which until recently was abandoned in the facilities where the works for the investment of Hellinikon are now underway.

Its use, as well as that of another aircraft located at the old airport, a Boeing 727, comes from its new owner, the Cypriot businessman, founder of the airline company “Helios” and current owner of the private jet airline, Zela Aviation, Andreas Christodoulidis . He himself bought the historic aircraft in question – which originally belonged to P.O.L.K.E.O.A. – by Lamda Development and undertook their complete reconstruction. One has already been transferred to the facilities he maintains in Lavrio.

NouPou contacted Mr. Christodoulidis, who stated that he is under pressure as the second aircraft should also be removed immediately from the area of ​​the old airport, where the mega project works are being carried out. “We have to say that valuable time was lost. The agreement with P.OL.K.E.O.A. unfortunately, it took quite a while to be done, with the result that now, as the Ellinikos works progress, the planes are at risk of being lost,” he stressed.

Mr. Christodoulidis explained that his reason for purchasing the airplanes is purely emotional and, since he has been dealing with airplanes for 30 years, he considered that these are objects of historical heritage and “it is impossible to lose them”. It is indeed characteristic that historically, BAC 1-11 contributed to supporting the economy of Cyprus after the Turkish invasion in 1974.

“I am a person who loves Greece and the coast of Attica very much. I spend money on the planes because I think they are a piece of history and I really want them to be saved so people can have a chance to see them. I couldn’t see these planes being murdered and turned into ‘pots,'” he tells NouPou.

What will become of the two planes?

According to the plans of Mr. Christodoulidis, as he shared them with us, his goal is to find a place in the southern suburbs, where they can be placed. “It’s something I’m doing for Greece and I’ve approached the municipalities of Elliniko – Argyroupoli and Glyfada, so that the plane can be placed as an exhibit in some central place, such as Vouliagmenis Avenue, so that people can see it. So far I have no progress. However, this is where the planes belong, and this is where they should stay, near the beach front. I need help to be able to retire the planes by January 30th as Lamda Development is asking me to do, and to tell you the truth, I’m running out of time. What I am asking is that a temporary place be found immediately in Elliniko or Glyfada, to place the planes and reconstruct them”.

Who is Andreas Christodoulides?

Andreas Christodoulidis, born and raised in Cyprus, lived for 38 years in London, while for about 1.5 years he has moved permanently to Greece, specifically to Vouliagmeni. His interest in aircraft started as a hobby which later turned into a profession. Later, Andreas Christodoulidis, proceeded to create Zela Aviation and Zela Jet, which was founded in 2006. The company’s offices are now located in Elliniko. The company is present in the sector of aircraft sales, leasing and aircraft capacity management. The company currently has offices in Cyprus, Greece and the United Kingdom, while it has direct exposure to the markets of Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North Africa.