1 Jul 2015

Newcastle International Airport welcomes Airports Commission report


Newcastle International Airport Ltd has today welcomed the recommendation by the Airports Commission that a third runway should be built at Heathrow. The Airport, its shareholders and other regional partners, has for many years campaigned in favour of expanding the UK’s global hub airport. The Airport now calls upon the Government to make a quick decision in favour of Heathrow and to put in place the steps needed to deliver this crucial project.

David Laws, Chief Executive at Newcastle International Airport, said: “We have had great faith in the process undertaken by Sir Howard Davies and his colleagues on the Airports Commission.

“We are very pleased that the Commission has made what we consider to be the right recommendation. Heathrow is the UK’s only hub airport, and is one of the most important hubs in the world, but it is full.

“The North East currently enjoys good connectivity into Heathrow with up to seven British Airways services a day, delivering 500,000 passengers from the North East. By constructing a third runway, and providing additional capacity, these services can be safeguarded, but can in the future also connect to a much wider range of global destinations.

“We urge the Government to agree to the recommendations of this Commission at the earliest opportunity, and set about the process of delivering this globally important scheme.

“There will be local political opposition to the third runway, but this must be overcome, as the building of the runway will be in the national interest.”

Councillor Iain Malcolm, Leader of South Tyneside Council, and Lead for the LA7 Shareholders, said: “The future success of the North East economy is dependent upon our region having good connectivity.

“In recent years we have secured services to key global hubs, including Dubai and New York, to compliment the likes of Amsterdam, Paris and Brussels. 

“In terms of passenger numbers, however, Heathrow remains our largest hub connection. I welcome the fact that in recommending the expansion of Heathrow, the Airports Commission has recognised its importance to regions such as the North East.

“The Local Authorities will now work with the team at the airport, and other regional stakeholders to encourage the Government to back this recommendation and move ahead with the new runway.”

Paul Woolston, Chair of the North Eastern Local Enterprise Partnership, added: “The Strategic Economic Plan for the North East is aimed at delivering more and better jobs.

“This can only be achieved and is supported by better transport networks, connecting the North East to that national and international economy.

“The expansion of Heathrow would help safeguard both our national and international connections, ensuring north eastern businesses are able to continue to benefit from the connections currently available.

“Moreover, businesses would eventually be able to exploit the opportunity provided by an expanded range of routes to growth markets that the new runway would open up.

“We are keen to see the government now commit to the delivery of a third runway at Heathrow, with connectivity for regions like the North East at the heart of this decision.”

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