Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Blackpool Airport Likely to Close UPDATED

Further to our posting below, we now provide the following update issued at 21.25.

Blackpool International Airport has announced it will close on 15 October after a buyer was not found.
A statement on the airport website said: "Unfortunately there is no option for the company other than to close."
Owners Balfour Beatty announced last week it had set 7 October as a deadline for any sale to be completed.
"This is a very sad day for the airport which has a proud aviation history and a loyal, appreciative customer following," the statement added.

The company said the airport had been making a loss for several years and had to close because no agreement had been made to secure its future.
It added the airport will remain open to the public until 15 October and will maintain operations as normal until then.

About 110 staff are employed at the airport, which served some 235,000 passengers last year.

Jet2, which had been operating out of the airport, will be transferring its Blackpool flights to Manchester from Friday.

Earlier Posting issued at 06.30
Blackpool International Airport has announced it is "likely to close" unless a buyer can be found.
 Blackpool Airport
A statement by the airport said if no sale agreement was reached by 7th October, the last commercial flights would take place on 15 October.
The number of routes from Blackpool does not make it into double figures. Jet2 flies to seven sunshine locations in Spain, Portugal and Turkey, while Aer Lingus Regional makes it to Dublin, and Citywing serves the Isle of Man.
It claimed the facility has been "making a loss for a number of years".
Balfour Beatty, which bought the site in 2008, put it up for sale a month ago to end its involvement in running regional airports.
The statement said: "On 28 August 2014, we announced our intention to find a buyer for the airport operating company.

"The airport operations have been making a loss for a number of years and we are currently exploring a number of options in an attempt to secure the future of the airport."

When the decision to sell the site was announced, the airport said it was "business as usual" and flights would continue.
But the latest statement said: "We regretfully confirm that if no agreement can be reached before 7 October 2014 which ensures the viability of its operations, then it is likely that the airport operations will close.
"In this event, we expect that the last commercial flights will take place on Wednesday, 15 October 2014."
The airport apologised and advised any affected passengers to contact their airline to confirm travel arrangements.

About 110 staff are employed at the airport, which served some 235,000 passengers last year.

The Independent's travel editor Simon Calder told BBC North West Tonight he believed the airport "is simply not yielding the kind of returns that any airport operator needs to stay making a sensible business".
"Unfortunately once you announce something like this the business takes a turn for the worse.

"I can't see many people booking flights from Blackpool in the hope it will be operating from October onwards, so I'm afraid my sad prophecy is that it will close."
A Balfour Beatty spokesman said: "Balfour Beatty can confirm that Blackpool Airport is exploring a number of options to secure a viable future for the continuation of operations.
"We regret to advise that if no agreements can be reached to achieve this, then it is likely that the airport operation will close on 16 October 2014."
A spokesman for airline Jet2.com, which flies from Blackpool, said the announcement had "come as a surprise to us".
He said that if the airport closes "contingency plans will be in place and we will do everything we can to support both our loyal staff and customers".

A spokesman for Citywing, which operates flights to the Isle of Man and Belfast from Blackpool, said the airline "understands that the position is fluid" but the company would "remain positive for future operations to Blackpool".