13 JANUARY 2014
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It has been a very good year for Southend Airport, a record 970,167 passengers passing through the revitalised Essex operation between January and December 2013. The 2012 figure was 617,000 but the new terminal did not open until March of that year. On a 12-month basis it would have been 717,000.
It is not all good news. The airport’s main customer airline, easyJet, is to drop two of its routes this year, the seasonal Newquay operation and its daily Edinburgh service, from 14 June. Belfast was recently withdrawn. Tenerife was introduced last Friday (10 January) with strong forward bookings. easyJet currently offers 14 European destinations.
Aer Lingus is the other main carrier at the airport and has three daily return services to Dublin, where travellers are able to take advantage of simple transatlantic connections to Boston, Chicago, New York, Orlando, San Francisco and Toronto. Customs and immigration are carried out at Dublin, far quicker than any US mainland operation.
Airport owner Stobart Group plc, have spent £120m on various upgrades including a runway extension, railway station, new hotel and also a control tower and radar installation. It is ploughing in another £10m, nearly doubling terminal capacity. www.southendairport.com
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