Why things are soaring at Southend Airport

Southend Standard: Passenger numbers grow and more routes planned - why things are soaring at Southend Airport Passenger numbers grow and more routes planned - why things are soaring at Southend Airport

SOUTHEND Airport is well and truly on the up with ambitious plans to serve more than five million passengers by 2020.

Since the Stobart Group took over the airport in 2008, the company has spent more than £120million renovating, expanding and modernising the terminal.

Anew railway station has also been built to improve links with London, and with this investment has come awards.

Which? Magazine named it the British airport of the year in 2013, with a staggering 84 per cent customer satisfaction rating.

And earlier this year it was named as Europe’s fastest growing airport, with a 57.1 per cent rise in passengers during 2013.

In the 12 months to February, the airport passed the one million passenger mark, having fallen just under in the 2013 calendar year.

With last week’s announcement of six new Flybe routes to northern European destinations, that growth is only set to continue.

The £10million terminal extension, opened by Transport Secretary PatrickMcloughlin on Monday, has increased the capacity of the airport and made space for the new flights.

Airport operations director David Lister said: “This year our target is 1.2 million to 1.3 million passengers.

“It’s difficult to put a true figure on an airport’s capacity as it depends on the schedule of flights, but with the current terminal we could accommodate four to five million passengers a year.

“For us to continue to grow, we need people wanting to fly to where we can fly to, but we also need a positive economic situation in the region and in the country.”

Last week’s announcement of the new routes will see 102 weekly flights in and out of Southend, when fully operational.

The new destinations – Caen and Rennes in France, Munster Osnabruck and Cologne in Germany, plus Groningen in the Netherlands and Antwerp in Belgium – were all carefully chosen.

Mr Lister highlighted the pertinent timing of flights to Northern France as the centenary of the First World War is upon us.

All the cities are vibrant university towns and Mr Lister thinks they will all prove popular as tourist routes.

The new flights are being laid on by Europe’s largest regional airline, Flybe, but the planes and routes are actually part of a tenyear franchise agreement between Flybe and Stobart Air.

Formally Aer Arann, Stobart Air has a similar deal with Aer Lingus, which runs daily flights from Southend to Dublin.

Simon Fagan, chief commercial officer of Stobart Air, said the new routes were chosen as they do not currently have a direct link to London.

He added: “The German destinations offer good locations for city breaks, especially in the winter time with their Christmas markets.

“And I can see the northern France locations being popular with outbound passengers from Southend during the summer season.

“But all the routes offer a connection with London for regional European airports which wasn’t there before.”

While the destinations’ tourist attractions are rightly highlighted, another key aspect to the new routes is their business links.

From September, when all the routes are fully operational, the two Flybe branded planes will be based overnight in Rennes and Antwerp, meaning the first flights of the day will see passengers coming in to Southend Airport.

The new routes won’t just be good for business people on the continent, as they bring with them 60 new jobs to boost the Southend economy.

Split between four Flybe crews of 15, the jobs will range from cabin crew right up to pilot, and Mr Lister sees it as good news for the area.

He said: “There will be more jobs in the airport as well and it will be a significant benefit to the local job market overall.

“The vast majority of people working at the airport are local to the Southend area.

“It is one of our key objectives to continue to provide the community atmosphere and small regional feel at the airport.”

The airport is already preparing to hit the two million passenger mark four years ahead of schedule.

It will take 1.3 million this year, rising to 2.5 million in two to three years and 5.5 million in future. Originally, the terminal was estimated to handle twomillion by 2020.

Mr Lister said: “We are not going to rest on our laurels. We have a big part to play in the South East over the next few years.

“We are going out to Marseille soon for a routes conference to discuss new options over the next few years.”

Comments (16)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:09am Thu 10 Apr 14

openspace says...

Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up.
Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport.
Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up. Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport. openspace
  • Score: -7

9:23am Thu 10 Apr 14

pembury53 says...

openspace wrote:
Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up. Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport.
yesterdays news........
[quote][p][bold]openspace[/bold] wrote: Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up. Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport.[/p][/quote]yesterdays news........ pembury53
  • Score: 4

10:29am Thu 10 Apr 14

Eastwoodian says...

pembury53 wrote:
openspace wrote: Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up. Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport.
yesterdays news........
you really are the life and soul of the party, aren't you ?
[quote][p][bold]pembury53[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]openspace[/bold] wrote: Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up. Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport.[/p][/quote]yesterdays news........[/p][/quote]you really are the life and soul of the party, aren't you ? Eastwoodian
  • Score: -3

11:57am Thu 10 Apr 14

pembury53 says...

Eastwoodian wrote:
pembury53 wrote:
openspace wrote: Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up. Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport.
yesterdays news........
you really are the life and soul of the party, aren't you ?
why rehash what was written yesterday... got it first time
[quote][p][bold]Eastwoodian[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]pembury53[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]openspace[/bold] wrote: Quick comment before the usual anti-airport posters wake up. Great news for the airport and the town. Many of us now know someone who has a new job at the airport.[/p][/quote]yesterdays news........[/p][/quote]you really are the life and soul of the party, aren't you ?[/p][/quote]why rehash what was written yesterday... got it first time pembury53
  • Score: 6

12:05pm Thu 10 Apr 14

costa-del-blowfly says...

I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree.
I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree. costa-del-blowfly
  • Score: -4

12:15pm Thu 10 Apr 14

pembury53 says...

costa-del-blowfly wrote:
I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree.
then you best start hoping that the 'key objectives' stated above are a pipe dream, otherwise your experience of these 'outstanding features' wont be lasting long......
[quote][p][bold]costa-del-blowfly[/bold] wrote: I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree.[/p][/quote]then you best start hoping that the 'key objectives' stated above are a pipe dream, otherwise your experience of these 'outstanding features' wont be lasting long...... pembury53
  • Score: 0

2:12pm Thu 10 Apr 14

costa-del-blowfly says...

pembury53 wrote:
costa-del-blowfly wrote:
I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree.
then you best start hoping that the 'key objectives' stated above are a pipe dream, otherwise your experience of these 'outstanding features' wont be lasting long......
Why won't they be lasting too long?

London City (which Southend based it's own operation) handles c.3.5m passengers per annum with a smaller area to operate and expand. It still manages to maintain very short check in and security clearance times.
[quote][p][bold]pembury53[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]costa-del-blowfly[/bold] wrote: I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree.[/p][/quote]then you best start hoping that the 'key objectives' stated above are a pipe dream, otherwise your experience of these 'outstanding features' wont be lasting long......[/p][/quote]Why won't they be lasting too long? London City (which Southend based it's own operation) handles c.3.5m passengers per annum with a smaller area to operate and expand. It still manages to maintain very short check in and security clearance times. costa-del-blowfly
  • Score: -2

3:20pm Thu 10 Apr 14

Sensible Man says...

I have just tried to book a flight from Southend to Cologne in July but - according to the Flybe website - there are no flights on this route!! Can anyone explain??? Has it been cancelled already or is it a computer glitch?
I have just tried to book a flight from Southend to Cologne in July but - according to the Flybe website - there are no flights on this route!! Can anyone explain??? Has it been cancelled already or is it a computer glitch? Sensible Man
  • Score: 4

4:27pm Thu 10 Apr 14

Eastwoodian says...

costa-del-blowfly wrote:
pembury53 wrote:
costa-del-blowfly wrote: I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree.
then you best start hoping that the 'key objectives' stated above are a pipe dream, otherwise your experience of these 'outstanding features' wont be lasting long......
Why won't they be lasting too long? London City (which Southend based it's own operation) handles c.3.5m passengers per annum with a smaller area to operate and expand. It still manages to maintain very short check in and security clearance times.
In addition, a 'think-tank' group have recently recommended the closure of City Airport . . . and to think, should that happen, then Southend Airport will have the infrastructure to pick up those services ;-)
[quote][p][bold]costa-del-blowfly[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]pembury53[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]costa-del-blowfly[/bold] wrote: I hope that the increase in passenger numbers isn't allowed to compromise the speed of check in and security. From speaking to people (who by the way come from all over the south east and even from west London) who have used the airport, all call this out as it's outstanding feature. And from experience I have to agree.[/p][/quote]then you best start hoping that the 'key objectives' stated above are a pipe dream, otherwise your experience of these 'outstanding features' wont be lasting long......[/p][/quote]Why won't they be lasting too long? London City (which Southend based it's own operation) handles c.3.5m passengers per annum with a smaller area to operate and expand. It still manages to maintain very short check in and security clearance times.[/p][/quote]In addition, a 'think-tank' group have recently recommended the closure of City Airport . . . and to think, should that happen, then Southend Airport will have the infrastructure to pick up those services ;-) Eastwoodian
  • Score: -3

6:28pm Thu 10 Apr 14

carnmountyouknowitmakessense says...

Sensible Man wrote:
I have just tried to book a flight from Southend to Cologne in July but - according to the Flybe website - there are no flights on this route!! Can anyone explain??? Has it been cancelled already or is it a computer glitch?
Get a grip man, or a class in computer basics...
[quote][p][bold]Sensible Man[/bold] wrote: I have just tried to book a flight from Southend to Cologne in July but - according to the Flybe website - there are no flights on this route!! Can anyone explain??? Has it been cancelled already or is it a computer glitch?[/p][/quote]Get a grip man, or a class in computer basics... carnmountyouknowitmakessense
  • Score: 0

8:24pm Thu 10 Apr 14

tophat27dt says...

carnmountyouknowitma
kessense
wrote:
Sensible Man wrote:
I have just tried to book a flight from Southend to Cologne in July but - according to the Flybe website - there are no flights on this route!! Can anyone explain??? Has it been cancelled already or is it a computer glitch?
Get a grip man, or a class in computer basics...
It seems the Cologne flights have been cancelled, although there is no statement from the airline/airport yet.
[quote][p][bold]carnmountyouknowitma kessense[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sensible Man[/bold] wrote: I have just tried to book a flight from Southend to Cologne in July but - according to the Flybe website - there are no flights on this route!! Can anyone explain??? Has it been cancelled already or is it a computer glitch?[/p][/quote]Get a grip man, or a class in computer basics...[/p][/quote]It seems the Cologne flights have been cancelled, although there is no statement from the airline/airport yet. tophat27dt
  • Score: 4

1:16am Fri 11 Apr 14

Billy4 says...

"Which? Magazine named it the British airport of the year in 2013, with a staggering 84 per cent customer satisfaction rating"....that is all thanks to the staff who are working themselves into the ground and getting no thanks for all their hard work. If the airport do not start replacing all the staff that are leaving then I think their good reputation will start to slip.
"Which? Magazine named it the British airport of the year in 2013, with a staggering 84 per cent customer satisfaction rating"....that is all thanks to the staff who are working themselves into the ground and getting no thanks for all their hard work. If the airport do not start replacing all the staff that are leaving then I think their good reputation will start to slip. Billy4
  • Score: -6

7:58am Fri 11 Apr 14

Sensible Man says...

Billy4 -

That is an interesting post. On that Eddie Stobart series on Channel 5 the staff always appeared to be happy ladies and gents!! Why are people leaving - it is a shame if that is so.

On the subject of Cologne flights - I have read elsewhere that Ryanair are starting flights from Cologne to Stansted which has caused the withdrawal of the Southend route. I do not know how correct that is, however.
Billy4 - That is an interesting post. On that Eddie Stobart series on Channel 5 the staff always appeared to be happy ladies and gents!! Why are people leaving - it is a shame if that is so. On the subject of Cologne flights - I have read elsewhere that Ryanair are starting flights from Cologne to Stansted which has caused the withdrawal of the Southend route. I do not know how correct that is, however. Sensible Man
  • Score: 1

10:51am Fri 11 Apr 14

Claude B says...

Yet the Edinburgh route, probably one of the most lucrative ones, is being dropped this June (before the Festival starts in August) - crazy !!!
Yet the Edinburgh route, probably one of the most lucrative ones, is being dropped this June (before the Festival starts in August) - crazy !!! Claude B
  • Score: 0

10:23pm Sat 12 Apr 14

jayman says...

after a bit of digging I finally found some public documents on this asset that we all own.

http://companycheck.
co.uk/company/028817
45/LONDON-SOUTHEND-A
IRPORT-COMPANY-LIMIT
ED/credit-risk#contr
act-limit

Southend council have not published any financials to my knowledge.
after a bit of digging I finally found some public documents on this asset that we all own. http://companycheck. co.uk/company/028817 45/LONDON-SOUTHEND-A IRPORT-COMPANY-LIMIT ED/credit-risk#contr act-limit Southend council have not published any financials to my knowledge. jayman
  • Score: -1

8:42am Tue 15 Apr 14

arram says...

firstly I would like to see the airport allow taxis from 334455 to be allowed to drop off at the airport entrance and pick up.....and...I do believe that the waiting area will be too small to accommodate the passengers in the future
firstly I would like to see the airport allow taxis from 334455 to be allowed to drop off at the airport entrance and pick up.....and...I do believe that the waiting area will be too small to accommodate the passengers in the future arram
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree