Garstang Travel boss warns Blackpool Airport news could affect travellers

Nicole Eaves, Garstang Travel
Nicole Eaves, Garstang Travel

The boss of a Garstang travel company has warned the possible closure of Blackpool Airport will leave many of her customers frustrated and disappointed.

Nicole Eaves, director of long established Garstang Travel on Market Place, said: ‘It’s devastating news that Blackpool Airport may be closing.

“We frequently use Blackpool as it’s very convenient, extremely easy to navigate around and not as daunting as Manchester Airport, especially with the security.”

She continued: “We currently have many clients due to fly out of Blackpool in the coming months on their holidays, some the day after the airport may close.

“They are facing uncertainty at present as we are waiting for an announcement from Jet2 who will be offering alternative arrangements for all affected.

“We will be contacting all passengers as soon as we have any further information.”

Nicole, whose business has been established 30 years, added: “It’s very sad news.

“People will choose a holiday destination where they can fly out of Blackpool because it’s important - it’s convenient.”

She made her comments after it was announced that the airport will close next month unless a buyer can be found.

The loss-making airport was put up for sale last month by owners Balfour Beatty, which purchased it in 2008.

Earlier this week a statement was released saying: “The airport operations have been making a loss for a number of years and options are currently being explored in an attempt to secure the future of the airport.

“The airport regretfully confirms that if no agreement can be reached before October 7, 2014 which ensures the viability of its operations, then it is likely that the airport operations will close.

“In this event, it is expected that the last commercial flights will take place on Wednesday October 15, 2014.”

Airport bosses have apologised for the uncertainty this will cause over the coming weeks and recommends that any affected passengers contact airlines, Stobart Air and Citywing to confirm travel arrangements.

Balfour Beatty has said it wants to end its involvement in running regional airports. The airport would be sold as a going concern.

Babs Murphy, chief executive of the North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce said: “If this news is correct then it’s a devastating blow for Blackpool.

“The town has been associated with the aviation business for over 100 years and the airport itself has built up a reputation for convenience, ease of access, and flying experience.

“We are aware of the efforts by Balfour Beatty to find a buyer and remain hopeful that one can be found who will invest the time and funds necessary to turn the airport’s fortunes around.”