Gatwick continues to claim it would build a runway even if there is also a 3rd Heathrow runway
The boss of Gatwick, Stewart Wingate (in line for huge bonuses if he can get a 2nd runway approved) is repeating his claim that he will get the runway, and build it instead of – or in addition to – a 3rd runway at Heathrow. Gatwick has managed to considerably grow its passenger numbers this year, as affluent citizens have plenty of spare spending money and flying is so dirt cheap (especially with the oil price being very low). Gatwick is increasingly adding long-haul destinations in the US, Florida and the Caribbean to its tourist customers. Gatwick says it has had an 11% rise in long-haul passengers this summer compared to 2016. Stewart Wingate said: “Later this year, we’ll be further adding to our more than 60 long-haul connections with routes to Denver, Seattle, Austin, Chicago, Taipei and Singapore … As Gatwick continues to grow beyond 45 million annual passengers, we remain ready and willing to build our financeable and deliverable 2nd runway scheme ….” His comments came as Labour peer Lord Blunkett claimed that the party will support building a 3rd runway at Heathrow because it fears the anger of powerful trade unions if it does not. He said the unions would “not countenance” the parliamentary Labour party being told to vote down the plans due to the sheer number of jobs involved. He has been persuaded by the job numbers put about by Heathrow.
Gatwick vows to build a second runway
by Phil Davies (Travel Weekly)
Sep 11th 2017
The boss of Gatwick today vowed to build a second runway instead of or in addition to a third runway at Heathrow.
The comments from chief executive Stewart Wingate came as Gatwick reported that August was the busiest month in its history with 2.1% year-on-year growth to 4.9 million passengers – boosted by a surge in long-haul travel to destinations such a Florida and the Caribbean.
Total numbers over the school holiday period also rose by more than 2% to reach 8.1 million passengers, including long-haul growth of 11.1%.
Wingate said: “Gatwick has just had its biggest-ever month during its busiest-ever summer holiday period. This clearly demonstrates the passenger demand for the growing global connectivity offered by Gatwick.
“Later this year, we’ll be further adding to our more than 60 long-haul connections with routes to Denver, Seattle, Austin, Chicago, Taipei and Singapore starting.
“As Gatwick continues to grow beyond 45 million annual passengers, we remain ready and willing to build our financeable and deliverable second runway scheme instead of, or in addition to, Heathrow should the government give us the green light.”
His comments came as Labour peer Lord Blunkett claimed that the party will support building a third runway at Heathrow because it fears the anger of powerful trade unions if it does not.
Unions would “not countenance” the parliamentary party being told to vote down the plans due to the sheer number of jobs involved.
Heathrow said that the mega-project would create 180,000 jobs in construction, airport services, the wider supply chain and the knock-on boost to the economy. This includes 10,000 apprenticeships by 2030.
Airport bosses have established a 14-strong task force to make sure that the jobs are shared across Britain. It is claimed that 100,000 could be created outside London and the south-east.
The group launched a six-week consultation at the TUC congress in Brighton, aimed at shaping the airport’s employment policy.
Lord Blunkett, the former education and employment secretary who is the task force’s chairman, said that the job opportunities made it almost inconceivable that a Labour Party led by Jeremy Corbyn would oppose a third runway.
It was reported last month that Labour was almost certain to vote against Heathrow when the plans were put to a vote of MPs in the first half of next year, citing environmental concerns.
However, Lord Blunkett insisted that union support for the £16.8 billion scheme would swing Labour behind the project. Unite, Britain’s biggest union, which is led by Len McCluskey, a key Corbyn ally, has campaigned in favour of a third runway.
He told The Times: “I would be very surprised if the major trade unions were to countenance the Labour Party opposing the kind of job creation, skills development and apprenticeship programmes that go hand-in-hand with the development and expansion of Heathrow.
“If we don’t have the expansion of Heathrow, it’s not just the jobs and the apprenticeships and training that will be lost; it’s an opportunity to present Britain post-Brexit as a country that’s going somewhere.
“I would be surprised if the trade union movement countenanced the Labour Party in parliament being asked to vote down a project that is so crucial to job creation.”
The new runway would be built by 2025 under the airport’s present plans. It is expected to boost capacity by 50%, allowing Heathrow to handle 740,000 flights a year.
The task force has been founded to make sure that suppliers invest in skills and apprenticeships while promoting careers in local schools and providing opportunities to job returners or older workers.
….. and it continues about Heathrow ….. see full article at
Bargain-hunting tourists lift Heathrow and Gatwick
By MICHAEL BOW (Evening Standard)
London’s biggest airports hailed a record-breaking August on Monday as tourists flooded to Britain to take advantage of the cheap pound.
Heathrow and Gatwick separately said they had their busiest ever August, with 7.5 million passengers and 4.9 million coming and going.
The relatively low value of sterling against international currencies has made Britain a bigger hotspot for bargain-hunting tourists, although Brits travelling abroad are feeling the pinch.
Heathrow said passenger numbers were up 2% in August, crowning it as the second-busiest month in the airport’s history. New flights to Scotland launched by Flybe in March helped drive UK destinations up 6% and 7% more people also went to the Middle East.
Heathrow chief executive John Holland-Kaye said demand to travel from Heathrow had “never been stronger”. “Heathrow is firing on all cylinders and showing the world our country is open for business,” he added of the airport which wants a third runway.
Rival Gatwick said August was the biggest month in the airport’s history, with passenger numbers up 2.1% on last year.
Long-haul flights were especially popular, with passengers travelling to far-flung destinations up 11.1%.
Gatwick chief executive Stewart Wingate said the airport, which opened a new Jamie Oliver restaurant in the South Terminal, had put greater focus on service.
“We have worked closely with our airlines and ground handlers to help ensure that more planes depart on time,” he said.
Cargo climbed 13% to 139,000 tonnes at Heathrow, with Latin America cargo volumes up 30% in August. Gatwick’s cargo numbers rose 25.6% year on year.
Gatwick passenger numbers boosted by low-cost long-haul carriers
by Phil Davies (Travel Weekly)
Aug 23rd 2017
The low-cost, long-haul flying revolution from Gatwick is boosting August bank holiday passenger numbers as the airport continues to push for a second runway to meet the growing demand.
The airport has seen a 14% rise in long-haul passengers over the holiday weekend compared to last year.
More than 300,000 passengers are due to fly out as part of a record 631,000 expected to use the airport this weekend – an increase of almost 1%.
Three of the 10 biggest-growing long-haul routes are to the US – Oakland up 124.8% year-on-year, New York up 54.9% and Los Angeles up 28.9%.
Boston is in 11th place with a 16.2% increase on the same weekend in 2016.
However, Dubai will be the most popular long-haul destination this weekend, up 10.7% year-on-year.
Almost a third of the airport’s leisure passengers (31.9%) will be heading off on four-day trips.
Head of airline relations Stephen King said: “As more American destinations are added to our growing long-haul route network, it’s clear that passengers are making the most of it with thousands heading across the pond for the bank holiday weekend.
“Later this year we’re set to give our passengers even more choice with the launch of new routes to Denver, Seattle, Austin and Chicago.
“Gatwick is already the world’s busiest single-runway airport and we are exploring new and innovative ways to make best use of our existing facilities so we can continue to forge new connections and increase Britain’s global connectivity when it’s needed most.”
He added: “Our August bank holiday figures demonstrate that, while we continue to provide new services for our growing number of passengers, we are also keen to expand.
“We stand ready to build our financeable and deliverable second runway scheme instead of, or in addition to, Heathrow should the government give us the green light.”
[THIS IS SHOCKING. EVER MORE PEOPLE GOING ON LONG-HAUL FLIGHTS FOR JUST A BANK HOLIDAY WEEKEND. THIS IS TRULY A WORLD GONE MAD, AND A SOCIETY THAT HAS LOST ANY SORT OF MORAL DIRECTION – LET ALONE THE VITAL ENVIRONMENTAL RESPONSIBILITY THAT THE WORLD (AND THE FUTURE OF HUMANITY ITSELF) NEEDS].
Gatwick’s top ten biggest-growing August Bank holiday long-haul destinations
• Oakland, San Francisco
• Punta Cana
• New York
• Cape Verde
• Los Angeles
Top ten biggest-growing August bank holiday short-haul destinations