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Job Losses Likely At Highland Airports As Plans Move Forward

17th January 2020

Wick John O'Groats airports one of the airports that would be downgraded and cameras installed to be controlled from New Century House in Inverness

Highlands and Islands, Airports Ltd has announced air traffic control for five Scottish regional airports is to be undertaken centrally from Inverness,

The change will involve Sumburgh, Dundee, Inverness, Kirkwall and Stornoway.

The move is in order to modernise with much more computer control and camera systems at the airports.

The union Prospect said the plan puts 60 jobs at risk and described it as "poorly thought through".

Unmanned towers would feed information to a new combined surveillance centre at New Century House in Inverness.

Prospect said the proposals also involve downgrading air traffic services at Benbecula and Wick John O'Groats airports.

The union said the sites would have a flight information service officer service, which would offer pilots information about the condition of the airfields and weather but not the flight paths of individual aircraft.

Job losses in Wick would be another blow to the town where several government departments have relocated in the past few years.

HIAL have acquired the building New Century House where currently Highland News and Media Group newspapers is situated. This comes hard on the heels of the recent news of the rationalisation of that business which controls several newspapers including the John O'Groat Journal and Caithness Courier.