IABP can confirm that the main access road for the Courtyard by Marriott hotel at Phase 1 has been officially named as Fresson Circle. This was chosen in recognition of Captain Ernest Edmund “Ted” Fresson’s (OBE) achievements as a pioneer aviator who lived from 1891 to 1963.
Fresson formed Highland Airways Limited in 1933, with considerable support from local businesses such as the Inverness motor engineers Macrae & Dick. On 8 May 1933 Highland Airways started its first scheduled service between Inverness, Wick and Kirkwall. In October 1933 he expanded into charter flights when he flew three businessmen from Aberdeen to Shetland. Scheduled services from Aberdeen began on 7 May 1934, and on 29 May 1934 he was awarded the Royal Mail’s first domestic airmail contract. Services followed throughout the Highlands and Islands and Argyll with links to Aberdeen, Perth and Glasgow.
Ted Fresson is remembered in a display at the Highland Aviation Museum near Inverness Airport and in the pattern of air services he established serving the Highlands & Islands, many of which continue to operate today. The airfield he established at Wideford near Kirkwall, a mile west of what is now Kirkwall Airport, is marked with a cairn and an information display.