Toronto Port Authority to honour WWI hero and all those serving in
TORONTO, Nov. 10 /CNW/ - Effective today, Toronto City Centre Airport ("TCCA") will officially change its name to Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport ("BBTCA") to honour Canada's First World War air ace and Victoria Cross recipient, as well as all veterans and members of the Canadian Armed Forces.
"We are fortunate to have had people like William Avery Bishop defending this country and our Allies when it mattered the most," said Mark McQueen, Chairman of the Toronto Port Authority. "Billy Bishop was one of our first war heroes, and he set the stage for today, where thousands of other men and women in uniform put their lives on the line for Canadian values and the defence of others. The Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport is dedicated as much to Canada's veterans and active service military personnel as it is to its namesake, who inspired a young nation with his courage and dedication."
After the First World War, Mr. Bishop and another WWI Victoria Cross recipient, Billy Barker, ran a flight service from the Toronto harbour to Ontario's cottage country. During the Second World War, Mr. Bishop also helped recruit soldiers at the newly built Port George VI Island Airport, and flew military aircraft in and out of what would become the airport that is now named after him.
"Our family is deeply touched by this honour, especially on the day before the solemn tribute of Remembrance Day," said Arthur Bishop, Mr. Bishop's son. "Our father loved flying and was very attached to this airport, which was Toronto's first. He would have been very proud to know that Torontonians still remember his accomplishments and choose to recognize them through attaching his name to the island airport."
Flight Lt. W. Arthur Bishop enlisted in the RCAF in 1941 and was posted overseas to 401 Squadron, flying Spitfires. Following the Allied invasion of Normandy of June 6, 1944, Arthur's squadron moved to a landing strip at Beny-sur-Mer just over three miles from Juno Beach where Canadians stormed ashore, established a beachhead and began the campaign to end the German occupation of Western Europe. Following the Second World War, Arthur became an accomplished, award-winning author of military history.
The Toronto Port Authority has given notice to Transport Canada that it will begin referring to the airport's new moniker. Pilots and air-traffic controllers will continue to identify the airport as CYTZ, its current airport code certified by the International Air Transport Association. As such, it is expected that there will be no confusion with CYOS, the Owen Sound Billy Bishop Regional Airport. CYOS is home to approximately 30 single engine private aircraft.
The renaming process will now enter its next stage, with air-navigation service operator NAV CANADA officially notifying the aviation community by acknowledging the name change in appropriate publications. The name change should be finalized on February 11, 2010, with the publication of these documents. A formal renaming ceremony will take place in conjunction with the opening of the new terminal at the BBTCA in 2010.
The Toronto Port Authority was incorporated on June 8, 1999, as a government business enterprise under the Canada Marine Act as the successor to the Toronto Harbour Commissioners. It is a federal public authority providing transportation, distribution, storage and container services to businesses. The TPA owns and operates the Toronto City Centre Airport, Marine Terminals 51 and 52, and the Outer Harbour Marina. The TPA also provides regulatory controls and public works services to enhance the safety and efficiency of marine navigation and aviation in the port and harbour of Toronto.
Further information about the TPA is available on the TPA website at www.torontoport.com.
For further information: For further information: Janet MacDonald, Toronto Port Authority, (416) 863-2003