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See Gatwicks new £24 million domestic arrivals facility

London Gatwick has this week opened a new arrivals facility for domestic travellers from other parts of the UK and Republic of Ireland, providing a faster and more convenient exit from the aircraft through a new dedicated arrivals route.

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The £24 million investment means that passengers arriving from the UK and Republic of Ireland, will now be able to disembark their aircraft from a jetty, or via aircraft steps and straight into the terminal building.

A new dedicated baggage reclaim belt has also been installed providing fast and convenient collection of luggage on the arrivals journey and freeing up capacity for international passengers.

The investment is part of Gatwick’s £1.11 billion Capital Investment Programme and VINCI Airports’ global commitment to seek out the most innovative ways to optimise the infrastructure of airports, as well as how passengers move through them, to ensure the best experience.

Previously, arrivals from parts of the UK (including the Channel Islands) and the Republic of Ireland, had to be coached from their aircraft to a special baggage reclaim area to ensure segregation from international passengers, in line with immigration policies. While a small number of flights might occasionally be coached during peak periods, 95 per cent will now be able to disembark via a jetty or steps.

For departing UK and Republic of Ireland passengers, additional investment in e-gates and biometric technology has transformed the gate room process by using more efficient self-service.   Iris recognition and reconciliation ensures the airport distinguishes UK and Republic of Ireland passengers from international travellers on the departure journey.

Gatwick’s Head of Terminal Operations, Andy Pule, said:

“We are always looking for ways to improve the experience of passengers who travel through Gatwick, and this is a great example of how we invest in existing infrastructure to facilitate growth while also improving service for all. UK and Republic of Ireland passengers are frequent visitors to Gatwick and use the airport as a transit point into London, or to connect with the rest of the world.”

This investment is set to benefit passengers arriving with Aurigny from Guernsey; British Airways from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Jersey; Aer Lingus from Dublin and Knock and Ryanair from Cork, Shannon and Dublin.

Education

Two hundred local pupils attend Eco summit at Crawley school

The Gatwick sponsored ‘Eco, Young, and Engaged’ (EYE) conference saw eight local schools and 200 pupils from Crawley and Horsham attend Ifield Community College on Monday to get a practical understanding of the environment and the importance of sustainability.

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Aged between six and seventeen, pupils chose between 13 workshops where they could learn about making their own compost and the wildlife within it, and about the effect that different clothing materials have on the environment and therefore which ones are more sustainable to buy and wear.

Other workshops included practical team challenges on how to upcycle (reuse) everyday items – such as using old milk bottles as planters for herbs – and how to harness the power of both wind turbines and solar panels to generate electricity.

The conference is part of the wider EYE campaign which seeks to bring schools in West Sussex together to focus on the importance of caring for our planet – to promote sustainability and encourage young people’s interest in environmental issues.

Gatwick’s Head of Sustainability, Rachel Thompson, gave an introductory talk on what sustainability is and its importance for protecting the environment.  She also discussed Gatwick’s ‘Decade of Change’ report, which tracks the airport’s progress on ten sustainability targets set over a ten year period (2010 to 2020), and explained how Gatwick’s buildings and fleet are carbon neutral.

The sponsorship of the conference is part of Gatwick’s wider community engagement programme which aims to make lasting and positive impacts to local communities and young people. Gatwick is also partnering with 15 local schools as part of the Primary Engineer programme to help schools teach STEM-based subjects in a more relatable and practical way to inspire more students to study the subjects.

Rachel Thompson, Head of Sustainability, Gatwick Airport said:

“It was great to see the enthusiasm of the students and hear their excellent questions and ideas. We hope today’s event will inspire more eco school projects and also encourage more students to consider studying STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects and pursuing careers in sustainability.”

Irram Ali, Ifield Community College Eco Lead, said:

“It was an honour to have been able to host the first Eco-Summit in Crawley. At Ifield Community College we are focused on encouraging our students to proactively engage with environmental issues and this was an excellent opportunity for such engagement to take place. All students were passionate and enthused and will hopefully implement some of their new knowledge in our local schools and community.”

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