More Energy Related Business But Numbers Down At Wick John O'Groats Airport
22nd October 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.
Latest figures from the group, which operates 11 airports across Scotland, show that 398,353 passengers used the airports between July and September this year, a small drop of 0.5% on the same point last year.
Sumburgh continued its strong run of growth, attracting an extra 11,469 passengers (+15.3%) during the quarter. Barra was the strongest performer in percentage terms, with numbers up 22.4%.
At Tiree, passenger numbers rose by 16.8% as a result of increased demand on the Glasgow and Oban routes.
At Stornoway, passenger numbers grew by 6.1%, boosted by the success of July’s Hebridean Celtic festival and the Hebrides Tattoo in August, while Campbeltown benefited from an upturn in demand on the Glasgow route and private commercial flights, recording an 11.6% increase. Benbecula and Islay also recorded growth.
Passenger numbers fell by 5.7% at Inverness as a result of fewer charter holiday flights and reduced domestic demand. However, with new flights to London City and Dublin and a third daily flight to Manchester launching this month, passenger numbers are expected to recover.
At Wick John O’Groats, numbers reduced by 27.4% compared to an exceptionally busy third quarter in 2013, during which the airport recorded a significant upturn in offshore helicopter activity. Although the airport has attracted further energy sector business this year, the number of movements is not at the high levels recorded last year.
Dundee Airport recorded a drop in passenger numbers of 14.44% during the period. However, a good performance on the Stansted route and the impact of private jet traffic using Dundee as a gateway to the Ryder Cup resulted in a much better performance in September, with passenger numbers down by 0.4% on the previous year.
At Kirkwall, fewer oil sector movements and a drop in demand for services to the mainland resulted in passenger numbers dipping 4.4%.
Inglis Lyon, managing director of HIAL said: "The third quarter was something of a mixed bag with many of our smaller airports such as Campbeltown, Benbecula and Stornoway performing extremely well, while Sumburgh also continued its run of strong growth. The drop in demand at Inverness was expected due to fewer inbound and outbound holiday flights this summer, a market which remains challenging for the Highlands. However, we are looking forward to the launch of new Flybe flights to London City and Dublin later this month which we expect will prove extremely popular."
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 £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.
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.
Passenger numbers at HIAL's regional airports grew by almost 8000 during the last quarter, with the group's island airports driving growth. Latest figures for the last quarter (April - June) show that passenger numbers at HIAL’s 11 airports grew by 7806, an increase of 2.2% on the same quarter last year.
* Energy sector drives huge growth at Sumburgh and Wick John O’Groats * Extra 70,000 passengers across the group * Sumburgh is Scotland’s fastest growing airport * Inverness enjoys best performance for five years * But smaller airports affected by reduced capacity Scottish regional airport operator HIAL has recorded its busiest ever year, attracting an extra 70,000 passengers over the past 12 months, according to latest figures. HIAL’s 11 airports handled 1,367,342 passengers in the 2013/14 financial year, an increase of 5.4% on the previous year (an additional 69,666 passengers).