Aviation minister jets in to mark airport’s 80th birthday


The government’s aviation minister, Baroness Sugg, has rounded off Manchester Airport’s 80th birthday celebrations by checking in on the progress of its £1bn Transformation Programme.

Baroness Sugg was given a glimpse of the airport’s future as she stood inside the first pier that will connect to the new ‘super terminal’ as a result of the project, which is the largest private sector investment in the North.

Work started on the site just under 12 months ago, with the first features set to go live by the end of this year and the enlarged terminal itself being delivered by 2020.

The visit came on the back of the government re-iterating its support for making best use of all UK airports – particularly those with spare capacity, like Manchester.

Baroness Sugg, commented: “Manchester Airport is an international success story and it is fantastic to play a part in its 80th birthday celebrations.

“This government is committed to ensuring that the North gets the connectivity it needs and that airports like Manchester play an important role in boosting the economy through jobs and businesses opportunities.  “

She added: “I expect growth at the airport to continue, building on its £1bn investment and achievements including securing routes to more than 220 global destinations.”

The minister visited Manchester Airport at the end of a week of celebrations to mark its 80th anniversary.

The week started with the unveiling of a striking video and poem, produced in partnership with Mancuniuan poet Tony Walsh (click here).

The £1bn Transformation Programme will see Terminal 2 more than double in size, as well as new piers constructed and a range of other enhancements to the customer experience.

Manchester Airport CEO Andrew Cowan said: “Baroness Sugg’s visit is extremely timely, as it comes in a week when we are celebrating the part Manchester Airport has played in the lives of those living and working here for eight decades, as well as its pivotal role in driving growth across the North and rebalancing the UK economy.”

He continued: “Through our £1bn Transformation Programme, we are investing in the growth of the airport, the North and the UK as a whole and that is why it was pleasing to hear this week that government is committed to maximising the potential of airports like Manchester.

“We look forward to working with Baroness Sugg and her team to develop plans to do just that in the months and years ahead.”