Newcastle Airport welcomes Catherine and calls for more support from the Government

Today Catherine visited the region’s largest Airport to discuss the need for additional support for the aviation industry with Airport leaders.

Newcastle Airport is continuing to ask the Government for 12 months business rates relief for Airport’s in England and Wales, to match the support which has been provided to Airports in Scotland and Northern Ireland as well as businesses in the leisure and hospitality sectors.

In addition to business rates relief leaders are also asking the Government for a suspension of Air Passenger Duty for at least 6 months in order to support the recovery when it comes.

The Airport, which saw no passenger flights at all throughout the month of May, has seen passenger numbers significantly affected by the COVID-19 crisis. To welcome the return of passengers the Airport introduced a Ten Point Plan of safety measures to ensure the terminal remains a safe environment for passengers and staff and hopes that these measures will play a part in reassuring any passengers looking to travel.

Catherine McKinnell MP said: “Newcastle Airport is an important North East transport hub connecting our region to the world, for holiday travellers and crucial business and trade links.

“I was pleased to meet with Nick and the team at the airport today to talk about how aviation recovers from the pandemic, the importance of the airport to our region, and to see the new safety measures they have put in place to protect the health of passengers during Coronavirus.

“It’s clear a lot of effort has gone into making the airport COVID-secure so that air travel can safely resume. I’ll continue to press Government to step up and urgently put the support in place which airports like Newcastle need in this crisis.”

Nick Jones, Chief Executive of Newcastle Airport said: “We were delighted to welcome Catherine McKinnell today to discuss the support we would like to see from Government as well as showcase our Ten Point Plan of safety measures.

“There is no doubt that the current crisis is having a significant impact on the economy, with the aviation industry being particularly hard hit. We thank Catherine for her support in raising the issues the industry is currently facing and we look forward to working together over the coming weeks and months.”

Newcastle Airport’s Ten Point Plan of safety measures includes social distancing, an enhanced cleaning regime, mandatory face mask wearing and hand santiser stations located throughout the passenger journey.

More information on the Airport’s measures can be found on the Newcastle Airport website here.