By Harry Sugden
Effective 12 November 2021
Upgrades to the VATSIM infrastructure now permit the use of an additional character in callsigns. The variable use of relief callsigns for positions with a double letter middle identifier has long been a source of confusion.
As such, the formal policy for the relief callsigns of all UK (London and Scottish) area positions is the addition of a second underscore between the middle identifier (e.g. SC) and the suffix (CTR).
LON_SC_CTR → LON_SC__CTR [LSC] MAN_SE_CTR → MAN_SE__CTR [PCSE] LTC_SW_CTR → LTC_SW__CTR [TCSW]
This policy extends to aerodrome/approach positions that previously required amended middle identifiers or truncated callsign prefixes to implement a relief callsign. The relief callsign for positions without a middle identifier shall also be determined by the addition of a double underscore, and not a number.
THAMES_APP → THAMES__APP (previously THA_APP) EGLL_2_GND → EGLL_2__GND (previously EGLL_5_GND) EGKK_P_TWR → EGKK_P__TWR (previously EGKK_Q_TWR) EGCC_DEL → EGCC__DEL (not EGCC_1_DEL)
Controllers are reminded that it is also possible to identify a controller position by its identifier in the controller list. These are the same identifiers used in crib sheets and in vMATSs when defining handoff and top-down orders.