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Extinction Rebellion protesters ignore call off of protest at Gatwick

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It was called off around 9:30am but some protesters who had already departed for the airport decided to go ahead with the protest instead.

Just over 20 protesters are currently circulating around the South Terminal arrivals hall handing out leaflets with some also playing music and singing.

A spokesman for Extinction Rebellion was asked about the decision cancel and then to go ahead again.

Referring to the violence seen on protesters on the London Tube he said:

“We had a problem this morning and we had a vote yesterday about whether to go ahead with the activity. The vote was no but then some decided to take the action anyway. It went wrong.”

Gatwick spokesperson said:

“Gatwick is open and operating normally today. We are aware of some peaceful protest activity at the airport and our priority is to make sure that our passengers and staff are able to continue their journeys and do their jobs safely without disruption. We will continue working closely with the police, who aim to facilitate this peaceful protest.

“We are determined to play our part to reach ‎the Government’s target of achieving net zero carbon emissions, however we will also remain focussed on the safe operation of the airport.”

This is a live story and will be updated accordingly.

More to come…

Gatwick

New two year train timetable for Gatwick is released as work on new station prepares to begin

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The £150m essential upgrade of Gatwick Airport station by Network Rail to relieve crowding, improve accessibility and reduce delays for commuters and leisure travellers across the South East will see Southern trains doubled in length along coastal routes to Eastbourne, Hastings, Worthing and Littlehampton.

A two-year temporary timetable to make space for the building work, due to start on 17 May and now available online to see, will provide much-needed relief for passengers on the congested coastal routes.

Additionally, Cooksbridge will have its first-ever all-week service as trains begin calling at the station on Sundays. This is a permanent change.

Also, on Saturdays, there will be an extra Thameslink service every hour between Brighton and Cambridge and the extension of an existing Sunday Cambridge to Gatwick Airport service through to Brighton. This will mean additional services at Brighton, Burgess Hill, Haywards Heath, Balcombe, Three Bridges, Gatwick Airport, East Croydon, London Bridge and through to Cambridge.

Further changes to Southern and Gatwick Express services are also required. There will be no off-peak Southern services between Brighton and London Victoria, but passengers will be able to travel with Gatwick Express, using Southern’s Super Off-Peak and Kids for £2 fares, which will be eligible on these services.

In the busiest commuter hour in each of the morning and evening peaks, Gatwick Express services will stay the same. Outside this time there will be two fewer Gatwick Express trains each hour, but the remaining trains will be lengthened to compensate and, from the airport, there will still be six Southern trains every hour to Victoria and eight more Thameslink trains to London Bridge providing sufficient space.

Southern, Gatwick Express and Thameslink is committed to helping passengers with information around the changes and will be running a comprehensive awareness campaign in the coming months.

Passengers can meanwhile check details online at Southern, Thameslink and Gatwick Express websites. Trains are also be available to view in online journey planners at nationalrail.co.uk.

Angie Doll, Managing Director of Southern and Gatwick Express, said:

“With over 20m passengers now using Gatwick station every year, this upgrade is essential to address overcrowding, improve accessibility and maintain a sustainable, reliable and punctual rail service for visitors and commuters along the route.

“This revised temporary timetable will create room for the work at the station while doubling the length of trains along the coast and retaining as many services as possible, supplemented by additional longer trains, ensuring we still have the services and capacity for our passengers.

“Gatwick supports the economy of the entire South East, bringing international travellers and trade to the region worth £2.7bn, supporting 70,000 jobs.”

Emma Rees, Head of Surface Transport, Gatwick Airport, said:

“A £150m upgrade to Gatwick Airport station is essential to meet growing demand and to reduce delays on the Brighton Mainline and wider region by tackling overcrowding at the station. The size of the station concourse will double, and it will become much easier for passengers to access the railway and airport through wider platforms, five new lifts, eight new escalators, new staircases and a new station entrance.”

Paul Harwood, regional investment director for Network Rail, said:

“The continued popularity and convenience of travelling by rail to Gatwick Airport means the station is now seeing more passengers than it was ever designed to handle. With further growth forecast, the station is in urgent need of improvement so that rail travel to and from the airport can continue to grow and help Gatwick support the local economy even more.

“The timetable changes will enable this vital construction work, allowing us to make the station safer, more accessible and capable of supporting smoother journeys for more trains and passengers long into the future.”

Rail Minister Chris Heaton-Harris said:

“Gatwick Airport is the first stop for millions of people visiting the UK, and these upgrades will relieve overcrowding, improve accessibility and reduce delays for holidaymakers and commuters.

“We will closely monitor these works to ensure improvements are completed on time and passenger disruption is kept to a minimum.

“Once complete, the expanded, modern station will be an impressive gateway to Global Britain.”

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