Guernsey Airport


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Airline vents anger over fire crew action



The airline Flybe has said it intends to ask Guernsey's States for well in excess of £100,000 in compensation.

The claim relates to the cancellation of 14 flights on Sunday, after the airport was unable to provide adequate fire cover.

An agreement between the States and the fire fighters on covering for sick colleagues came to an end on Saturday night. And on Sunday morning staff illness meant there weren't enough staff to provide the fire cover needed for Flybe's Dash 8-Q400 planes. Passengers were outraged.

Flybe is very upset by the situation and says it had no advance warning of the withdrawal of cover.

Ian Taylor, Flybe, told channelonline.tv; "As you are very much aware this situation has been dragging on since July of last year and we would have thought that it'd be very simple for the states of Guernsey and the airport to reach an arrangement with the fire service which allowed all airlines to operate safely in and out of Guernsey. Apparently, as we understand it, this agreement was allowed to lapse at the end of last week which led to an amazing situation yesterday where we had to cancel 14 flights affecting 800 passengers and this is actually, quite frankly, ridiculous."

If it weren't for the snow, all of Flybe's flights would have been operating normally today. And as far as we know, they're going to continue to do so in the coming days. And that's the difficulty with this particular work to rule, nobody knows until somebody calls in sick that there's going to be a problem with fire crew cover. And an additional issue for Flybe is they're the only airline affected, because they have the largest planes.

Flybe will compensate passengers affected and will pursue its own claim against the States. It wants to see a deal struck quickly because no one knows when this problem could arise again. Although politicians and union leaders met today for talks, so far no deal has been announced.

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Flybe success leads to Guernsey job growth

Flybe continues to increase its commitment to the Channel Islands and in particular to Guernsey where it is now launching a recruitment drive for local cabin crew.

The airline is operating six routes to and from Guernsey over the 2009 summer season with more than 190 flights a week that, as part of its extensive 187 summer route network, includes its key London Gatwick service as well as those to Birmingham, Exeter, Jersey, Manchester and four daily flights to Southampton.

Flybe’s extensive network allows passengers travelling from Guernsey the additional choice of over 39 convenient connections to a wide range of destinations throughout the UK and regional Europe. These include the option of a 4-5 weekly service to Alicante via Southampton, an affordable choice that gives passengers the ability to save money and bypass more costly connections by having to travel through London.

As a result, Flybe is bucking the economic downturn and looking now for additional cabin crew. Chief Commercial Officer, Mike Rutter explains: “We are proud to be able to play a key job creation role during these challenging economic times, with cabin crew recruitment an integral role in providing quality customer service. Our continued commitment to Guernsey is strongly underlined by the creation of these new jobs and we look forward to receiving lots of online applications.

“We are particularly keen to cultivate home grown employees and are looking for dynamic personalities with loads of enthusiasm and drive to continue to provide our Island passengers and the rest of the UK with the top level service and experience our customers expect.”

The minimum age for cabin crew is 18 years and Flybe, in looking to recruit for its fully funded 4-week training course held in Exeter in May and June, is hoping to attract people who may be looking for a career change or alternatively those about to embark on a career. Guernsey has a long association with the hospitality industry and the hotel and catering industries could be just the areas that nurture the type of recruit the airline is looking for.

The course will lead to successful recruits eventually qualifying for Flybe’s NVQ2 Aviation Operations in the Air for Cabin Crew certification, the aviation sector’s only widely recognised cabin crew qualification.

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Flights resume at Guernsey Airport

Some airlines are being allowed to fly in and out of Guernsey Airport after a dispute over firefighters' pay led to the grounding of commercial flights for the last two days. A lack of fire crews to cover overtime or sickness meant all Flybe flights were cancelled from Monday afternoon, stranding hundreds of passengers. This was followed by all flights except medical emergencies being grounded on Tuesday until the afternoon.

However, Blue Islands and Aurigny are now both operating flights to and from the airport. A spokesman for the hub said flights were expected to return to normal on today after the pay dispute was referred to an industrial tribunal. Firefighters are refusing to discuss whether a deal has been reached, but have said that sufficient cover is currently being provided by them to allow commercial flights to resume.

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Guernsey Airport firefighters agree pay deal

An agreement has been reached between Guernsey States and airport firefighters settling a pay dispute. Under the agreement, the firefighters will receive a ‘recruitment and retention’ payment. The amount, which has not been revealed, will be in addition to their current salary.

Flights were grounded on Monday and most of Tuesday because the dispute meant that there was no overtime or sickness cover. The agreement follows a meeting on Tuesday of the States Emergency Powers Authority, which considered the affect a prolonged closure of the airport would have on the island's economy. Both sides have also agreed to try and conclude talks on terms and conditions which have been ongoing for more than two years.

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Hopefully this concludes this dispute once and for all. As the report says, the dispute has been ongoing for more than two years causing disruption to flights on several occasions.
 

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[textarea]New Guernsey duty free shop opened

Heinemann-Scorpio, the joint venture between German travel retailer Gebr Heinemann and UK company Scorpio Group, celebrated the opening of the refurbished duty-free store at Guernsey airport last week. They were awarded the long-term exclusive supply contract at the location earlier this year. The shop is operated by Wine and Beer Importers (Guernsey), a subsidiary of RW Randall of Guernsey, which also runs two other outlets at the airport.

The renovated store has a greater focus on fragrances and cosmetics, with several brands introduced for the first time such as Clarins and Estée Lauder. Other ranges, including Clinique and Christian Dior, have been expanded. The shop also features an enlarged fashion accessories section featuring sunglasses, watches, leather goods, Swarovski jewellery and a dedicated Hugo Boss gondola.

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[textarea]Guernsey Airport security upgrade opened

The upgraded Guernsey Airport central search area has opened. It has been extended, security equipment has been re-arranged and a priority channel has been introduced for airport and airline staff. It is hoped that the changes will improve the flow of passengers at busy times.

A spokesman for the airport said: ‘Passengers will see a great improvement in the search area and staff moving between the main airport terminal and departures will have less impact on passengers.’

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[textarea]Guernsey Airport runway planning application submitted

Guernsey Airport's runway redevelopment has moved a step closer after the submission of plans for the £81m project. The Public Services Department said if planning permission and final States approval is granted, work will start before the end of the year.

The final project budget is due to be released later this month and debated by the States in July.

If approved the project would be the largest undertaken at the airport since it opened in 1939 and is aimed at equipping the airfield for a 30-year life span.

The planned works, which are expected to take about two years to complete, include resurfacing the current runway, re-positioning it 120m to the west and creating longer safety areas at both ends. The concrete apron areas next to the terminal, where planes park, would also be replaced and a completely new drainage system installed. The existing taxiways, which link the aprons and runway, also require resurfacing and realignment along with new ground lighting and navigational aids. The approach lights to the east and west of the airport will also be moved.

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[textarea]Guernsey Airport could be operated by a private company

Plans to take the operation of Guernsey Airport out of States control and for it to be operated via a private company are being considered. Although the airport would remain wholly-owned by the States, it could be operated as a commercial company.

In the UK, most airports have been sold to private firms or are at least operated as a commerical enterprise. With the island dependent on the links the airport provides, full privatisation is not seen as an option, but consultants will be called in to assess what options are available. A report is expected this Autumn.

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[textarea]Guernsey Airport to close during runway upgrade works

Guernsey Airport will close for 8 days in 2012 while runway improvement work is carried out, the States said. The closures will be on Tuesdays and Wednesdays in March, May, November and December next year.

The runway work is scheduled to take two years to complete and is part of an £80m refurbishment of the airport. The airport will be closed on 20, 21 March, 8, 9 May, 27, 28 November and 4, 5 December 2012. Alternative arrangements will be made for mail planes.

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Jordan-34092

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GUERNSEY AIRPORT CLOSURES IMPACT FLYBE

Airline Flybe has expressed disappointment that Guernsey Airport will close for essential work to the runway for four two-day periods in 2012, all on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
A spokesperson for Flybe said the airline was pleased the work would be carried out, but felt being given four months notice was disappointing.

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Carl0927

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According to the companies Facebook Groups page Air Alderney plan to start ops between ACI and GCI in Feb 2020.
 
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