Cranfield airfield ATC has advised the BGA that they are no longer permitted ‘for insurance purposes’ to give permission to use the grassed area previously used in the event of a glider landing. They note that airfield is used for UAV operations even when the airfield is closed, that glider pilots should note that they may be refused permission to land other than in a declared emergency, and where a glider is given permission to land at Cranfield, landing long and taxiing clear of the runway is helpful.
In any case, glider pilots are encouraged to talk to Cranfield ATC – which does not have radar – when close to the airfield ATZ.
Cranfield is currently marketing itself as the ‘new London alternative’. http://www.cranfieldairport.com/.