Avalon Aero started operations in 2000 by providing hands-on technical advice and maintenance support for the conversion, and subsequent worldwide operation, of a specialist BAe 146 research aircraft. Martin, our Managing Director, has been with us from the start and has helped build the company into the premier maintenance provider that we see today. Crucially, growth has not eradicated the ingrained core values that are typical of a small, family-run business.

We pride ourselves on our reputation for being open, trustworthy, reliable and transparent in all our activities and relationships. We work tirelessly to make our customers’ involvement as straightforward as possible and we have a proven record in offering those customers the reassurance of knowing that their valuable assets will be delivered back to them on budget, on time and in good order. In the competitive and demanding aviation industry, we realise how important it is to keep our delivery promises.

Over the past 20+ years, we have built up a second-to-none reputation for the provision of aircraft maintenance, special mission projects and large scale, bespoke conversions on various aircraft types and sizes; our skill set with the BAe146 / Avro RJ types is renowned across the world.

Not content with resting on our laurels, we are committed to expanding into the future. We have recently relocated into a newly refurbished, larger facility at Cranfield Airport, UK, and made significant investments into adopting new aircraft types and special mission projects.

It is this commitment, along with our specialised knowledge, that has positioned Avalon Aero to continue as a leading Maintenance Repair Organisation within the aviation industry for many years to come.

Avalon Aero’s mission is both simple and profound:

to provide an unparalleled excellence in aviation maintenance solutions.

To achieve this, we are committed to:

  • Forming a unique relationship with each of our customers, offering bespoke solutions aligned with their specific requirements.
  • Shouldering as much of the complexity of aircraft engineering as possible, thereby keeping the customer’s involvement as simple and painless as possible.
  • Partnering with our customers to maximise safety, cost effectiveness and efficiency, whilst minimising the aircraft downtime and delivering on-time, on-budget maintenance activities.
  • Investing in our people and developing lasting relationships with our stakeholders.


Martin Darling - Managing Director

Martin joined the Royal Air Force in 1985 where he completed his training as an aircraft engineer, initially working on Chinooks and Pumas before transferring to provide flying support on The Queens Flight.

After making the move from Military to Civil engineering, Martin achieved his Civil Aviation licences for both electrical and avionics whilst working with Flightline Engineering. Due to extensive expansion, Martin progressed from Station Engineer to Line Maintenance Manager, becoming responsible for eight European and two UK stations.

Avalon Aero later provided an opportunity for Martin to join them by undertaking an unusual challenge of leading a team of engineers into bringing a British Atmospheric Research BAe 146 aircraft into service. This was successfully completed and delivered to the customer in April 2004, where he still remains heavily involved in its maintenance operation.

Continuing with his achievements, Martin took on the position of Technical Director in 2010, becoming instrumental in the development of setting up a line and base operation at MOD Boscombe Down supporting the Empire Test Pilot School, as well as going full circle by securing the base maintenance contract for the Queens Flight aircraft for the RAF.

When founding owners, John and Coral Glancey, stepped down from the day to day running of Avalon Aero in 2020, Martin was handed the reigns, becoming the Managing Director and new owner.

Martin continues to support Avalon Aero’s existing customer base whilst working on new and exciting projects.


+44 (0) 7970 054 725

Chris Glancey - General Manager/Director

With over 20 years service, Chris has been with Avalon Aero since its infancy, managing the development and implementation of the company's administrative responsibilities and duties.

As the business has expanded, so has Chris’s responsibilities, seeing his role at Avalon Aero develop significantly over the years. As well as developing experience in a number of key areas of the company, including Spares Procurement and Logistics, Finance, Human Resources and Health and Safety, Chris has also managed a number of milestone projects, such as several successful hangar relocations, most notably the initial hangar expansion to / from Biggin Hill Airport in 2009 and 2017 and most recently the hangar facility relocation at Cranfield Airport in the summer of 2023.


+44 (0)7980 312 096

Steve Ball - Operations Director

After initially training in mechanical engineering, Steve joined the RAF as a pilot and spent 18 years in a variety of fast-jet and staff appointments. After leaving the RAF, he headed the Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements for 3 years before moving on to the corporate aviation sector, gaining pilot type-ratings in Learjet, Falcon, Gulfstream and BAe146 aircraft, and progressing to Chief Pilot and Accountable Manager positions. He joined Avalon Aero as Operations Director in 2017, taking the lead in the successful provision of Flight Operation services of a BAe146 for a UK-based operator up until the contract’s completion in December 2022.

Though now part time, Steve remains a Director of Avalon Aero, where his vast management experience and keen eye for detail makes him in an immensely important part of the team.


+44 (0)7795 062 660

Roger Chick - Quality Manager

Roger joined the RAF as an Engineering Technician and completed 27 years service maintaining both fixed and rotary wing aircraft. During this period he was employed on the The Queen’s Flight and flew as a support engineer on numerous occasions, predominantly as a Wessex Crew Chief. After leaving the RAF in September 2005 Roger joined Avalon Aero at Biggin Hill and in March 2006 he became the Quality Manager. Since then, Roger has cultivated an excellent association with the UK Civil Aviation Authority and has achieved great success in obtaining numerous other country approvals and ISO accreditations to assist our engineering works with our customers on a worldwide basis.


+44 (0)7709 987 567

Paul Bew - Spares and Logistics Director

Paul began his career in aviation in 1989, holding various stores and logistics positions at Aeroserv and FLS/Dan Air, but it was in 1999 that he was promoted to Support Manager at CASCO, tasked with the responsibility for the company’s Contracted Customer base, which subsequently led to Paul joining their board of Directors in 2006.

After his time at CASCO, Paul took the leap to set up his own spares and logistics company, Tailored Aviation. Now an established family enterprise in its own right, Paul, through Tailored Aviation, continues to support fleets and customers across the world, but it is with this support that Paul became directly involved in providing daily spares and procurement services for Avalon Aero, which has helped us elevate our procurement services for our customer base. After working with Avalon for a number of years, Paul was invited to join the Avalon Aero Board of Directors in April 2023.

Paul brings with him a wealth of expertise and knowledge in the Spares and Logistics field, and is committed to enhancing Avalon Aero’s reputation as a leading BAe 146 / RJ MRO, whilst looking ahead to build the foundations for the next chapter in Avalon Aero’s story with new aircraft types and special mission projects.


+44 (0)7917 854 823