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‘Devastating for staff and local businesses’ Gatwick Airport responds to news of Virgin Atlantic’s plans to leave

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Gatwick Airport has responded to the news that Virgin Atlantic is to leave Gatwick Airport and make over 3,000 staff redundant.

A Gatwick spokesperson said:

We are very saddened to hear the news today about Virgin Atlantic’s plans.  We have had a long, close and successful relationship with the airline since it made its maiden flight from Gatwick back in 1984. 

Virgin Atlantic will always be welcome at Gatwick and we will continue our efforts to explore ways to restart the airline’s operations as soon as possible, in the knowledge that they intend to retain their slot portfolio at Gatwick for when demand returns. 

This news will be devastating for its staff and the many local businesses that supply and support the airline at the airport and its HQ in Crawley, however we will continue to work with Virgin Atlantic to get them flying again from Gatwick.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a severe impact on the aviation sector but we remain confident that the industry will recover as air travel demand returns. 

We remain very optimistic about the long-term prospects of Gatwick Airport and our resilience as a business, and having remained open throughout this pandemic we are in a strong position to extend our current operations quickly to meet demand.   

We will continue to work closely with our other airline partners, including easyJet, the IAG Group, Wizz, TUI and Ryanair to strengthen our business for the future.  We also welcome the recent news that another of our major airline partners – Norwegian Airways – has taken important steps forward to secure its future at Gatwick. 

“We look forward to all our airlines flying again soon.”

Charity

Gatwick Fire Service to run marathon on airports runway for charity

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It will consist of running 13 lengths of the 3.3km main runway, but WHite Watch Gatwick Fire Service hope to raise money for local hospital charity (SASH).

Taking place on Sunday 14th June, the crew will be running the 13 lengths as a relay, with the final distance being just over that of a marathon.

Taking advantage of the lack of flow during periods of the day, they will use those opportunities to ‘do something different and raise awareness for our local NHS staff putting themselves on the line every day during this pandemic’.

The money will help the staff at East Surrey Hospital and Surrey & Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust during the Covid 19 situation.

If you would like to help with a donation you can do so at their JustGiving page here.

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