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Gatwick takes the airport to schools with new initiative

London Gatwick has launched a new initiative to take the airport to schools across Kent, Surrey and Sussex with 15 schools from across Kent attending the first roadshow at Hadlow Rural Community School, near Tonbridge, on 28th March.

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The roadshows are designed to give exclusive insights into the aviation industry and form part of Gatwick’s local engagement programme which promotes the study of STEM – science, technology, engineering and maths – subjects.

Over 500 pupils, aged between 13 and 15, attended the Kent event and took part in 12 different STEM-related activities such as marshalling in a plane and learning about the work the Gatwick team do on the airport’s land holdings.

The roadshows link the STEM subjects with relevant job possibilities at the airport and are a way of encouraging and nurturing talent for the future. easyJet, DHL and the Royal Aeronautical society also took part in the roadshow to help provide students the widest possible insight into the various areas of the aviation industry. 

Paula Aldridge, Community Engagement Manager, London Gatwick, said:

“We are delighted that the schools share our ambition to inspire young people to work in STEM industries. Our aim is to inform, invest and inspire and we have created this first roadshow with these three principles at the forefront of our minds.

“We are so grateful to Hadlow Rural Community School for hosting the event- we hope we returned their generosity by putting on a truly inspirational and successful event.”

Simon Harris, Enterprise Coordinator, West Kent Partnership, said:

“The West Kent Enterprise Adviser Network is delighted that Gatwick agreed to come across to West Kent and deliver this exceptional event. It was great to see people who love their jobs telling more than 600 young people why they do so.

“We have already heard from some of the schools and they were greatly impressed with the interactive nature of the event and report that a number of students now have fresh and exciting new career aspirations.”

Mark Nichols, Director of Standards and English Teacher, Hadlow Rural Community School said before the event:

“I’ve worked in schools for nigh on 10 years – to host an event such as this is beyond precedent. The benefits to be had by pupils attending will be huge!

Gatwick

Recording-breaking start to 2019 for Gatwick

London Gatwick has achieved its busiest-ever start to a year, as passenger numbers grew by +4.0% in Q4, compared to 2018, as 9.7 million passengers travelled through in the first three months of 2019.

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Long-haul growth was also strong in Q4, up +7.5%. This contributed to another month of healthy cargo growth, +7.2% quarter on quarter.

North Atlantic routes drove this busiest-ever start to a calendar year +15.3% on Q4 2018. Responding to this transatlantic demand, Virgin Atlantic and Delta have announced plans to grow at Gatwick –  with new routes to Boston Logan and New York JFK from summer 2020 – adding to Gatwick’s over 250 flights each week to the USA.

It comes as Gatwick welcomed more passengers than ever during February half-term. 1.2 million passengers travelled through the airport between 15th and 24th February and an increase of +7% on the equivalent week last year.

Gatwick passengers are increasingly looking to go further afield at half-term with long-haul destinations up nearly 20% for the holiday period, as 1 in 6 Gatwick passengers are currently travelling to long-haul destinations. Popular long-haul half-term destinations include Dubai and Bridgetown joining short haul favourites Dublin, Barcelona and Geneva.

February also saw the start of easyJet’s new Dusseldorf service, which operates 11 times per week to the business and leisure destination, and is the fifth new route from the airline at Gatwick in recent months, joining Aqaba, Rovaniemi, Warsaw and Aarhus. This follows the addition of a new service to the Turkish capital, Ankara, from Turkish Airlines in January as the number of capital cities served by Gatwick now stands at 50.

In the three month period, domestic routes to Isle of Man and Glasgow saw growth of +9.0% and +5.0%, respectively. Meanwhile passengers using GatwickConnects, the airport’s service which enables passengers to book connecting flights via Gatwick, increased +80% from Edinburgh, +58% from Jersey and +50% from Belfast in Q4.

Stewart Wingate, Chief Executive Officer, Gatwick Airport said:

“Gatwick’s year has started as we mean the rest of 2019 to go on. Our pioneering spirit at the airport is driving for success in both the short and long term.

“In the immediate period, we continue to innovate, enabling new and established airlines to grow to all parts of the world – including most recently a new service to Rio de Janeiro.

“Looking ahead to further opportunities, we will publish the final version of Gatwick’s masterplan later this year, outlining potential options for future growth.’

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