Gatwick chief calls for second runway

Growth at Gatwick with a second runway is being put forward as the best option for improving airline connectivity for the next generation.

The call came from the airport’s chief executive as the airport reported a 1.2% rise in passengers to 19.9 million handled in the half year to September 30.

Turnover for the six months was up by 3.6% to £325.8 million while EBITDA rose by 4.8% to £172 million.

Gatwick reported continued growth in short-haul markets into Europe together with new long-haul carriers to Asian markets contributing to London’s connectivity to the Far East .

Chief executive Stewart Wingate said: “These strong half year results come at the same time as Gatwick’s enters its fourth year under new ownership.

“In that time we have focused on growth and delivering greater passenger choice, convenience, better customer service and, crucially, more connections for both business and leisure travellers.

“Three years of competition has seen Gatwick grow its European short-haul business, whilst also opening up new routes to key markets in Russia, China, Vietnam and Korea. We have seen passenger growth throughout this period and our quality standards are today unparalleled.

“This proves passengers are best served by allowing airports to compete. It is why we recently announced our plans to explore second runway options as we believe growth at Gatwick is the best option for increasing connectivity for the next generation.”

He added: “Over the next three years we will continue to transform the airport, maximising the opportunities in the short-haul market whilst stepping up our efforts to attract airlines that serve markets of strategic importance to the UK.”

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