MSP Praises Airport Usage Increase
4th November 2013
Visiting Wick John O’Groats Airport recently, Highlands and Islands (Scottish Labour) MSP Rhoda Grant has praised the boost in airport usage by around 120 % due to the increased demand from the energy industry.
Chevron uses Wick John O' Groats Airport as its base to transport offshore workers to its rigs. Helicopters transporting oil industry workers offshore have seen the number of passengers at Wick John O' Groats Airport increase by almost 120%. Figures from HIAL showed that 4634 passengers used Wick John O' Groats airport in September, an increase of 119.1% compared to the same month 12 months ago.
The strong growth at Wick John O’Groats is the result of increased energy traffic and growing demand for scheduled passenger services.
Following a meeting with Airport Station Manager William Sutherland to discuss the increase in numbers and the future of the airport, Rhoda Grant MSP said:
“The continual increase in passenger numbers at Wick John O’Groats Airport is great news for Caithness and the North of Scotland.
“The Airport is going from strength to strength and helping develop both business and tourism across the county. Increased capacity between John O’Groats and Edinburgh will hopefully bring in more visitors to the far north.
“The announcement by ‘Lonely Plant’ that Scotland is one of the top three destinations to visit in 2014, coupled with events such as the Commonwealth Games taking place in Glasgow, provides a great opportunity to encourage more people to take the journey north and visit Caithness whilst they are in Scotland.”
PSO To Protect Wick Flights Could Take Up To A Year To Put In Place. Highlands and Islands Labour MSP, David Stewart, is urging the Scottish Government to look seriously at interim measures to save Wick air routes after being told state aid for services could take up to a year to put in place.
Wick John O'Groats Airport has been hit hard with the news that Loganair is to axe the flights between Wick and Edimburgh Bookings had already dropped in the last year and the Cornavirus has made things worse. The service will cease at the end of March.
Flybe's franchise partner Eastern Airways has flights to Wick from Aberdeen and would have been in danger if the company had gone bust. Flybe has agreed Â£110m rescue deal.
The Air Discount Scheme (ADS) which provides cheaper air travel for islands and north Highland residents has been extended. The scheme month has been renewed until 31 December 2020.
Prospect air traffic controllers in the Highlands and Islands to strike on 26th April 2019 over pay. Prospect air traffic controllers working for Highlands and Islands Airport Limited will be taking strike action on the 26th of April in relation to their 2018-19 pay offer.
Prospect has confirmed arrangements for balloting air traffic controllers at Highlands and Islands Airports Limited on industrial action. The ballot will open on 11 February and close on 1 March.
Regional airport operator HIAL has handled more passengers than ever, according to latest figures for the last financial year. The airport group, which operates 11 airports across Scotland, handled 1,437,625 passengers in 2015/16, up by more than 6000 on the previous year.
Airport operator HIAL's strong run of growth in 2015 continued in the last quarter according to latest figures. In the third quarter (July to September), the group recorded an extra 12,522 passengers (up 3.1%) compared to the same period in 2014.
Island airports soar but overall numbers dip slightly at HIAL. Passenger numbers at HIAL's regional airport fell slightly in the third quarter of the year, though a number of island airports reported soaring growth.
Passenger numbers at regional airport operator HIAL climbed to their highest ever level in the latest financial year, as the group stepped up its investment for the future. The company's annual report and accounts for the year 2013/14 show that almost 70,000 extra passengers used the group's 11 airports during the year.