SOUTHEND Airport bosses have voiced concerns over the impact of Brexit.

The airport has recorded massive growth in recent years and welcomed the introduction of dozens of new routes, launched across Europe.


Warwick Brady

Yet despite another impressive summer - which saw more than 24,000 passengers use the airport in just one weekend in July - owners Stobart have raised concerns over the future.

A trading update read: “Given the ongoing uncertainty in the sector, in part caused by Brexit, the group is taking a cautious approach to passenger forecasts in the short term, with the board working on the basis of circa 2.3 million passengers for the year ending 29 February 2020.

“This would represent an increase of 53 per cent versus the previous year.”

New Ryanair flights were launched from the airport in April, as well as Loganair routes in May, and an EasyJet expansion has seen a 42 per cent increase in passenger numbers in the first half of the year.

While more flights are currently being launched by Wizz Air - a Hungarian budget airline.

The trading update added: “These new routes will help support the continued growth in passenger numbers at London Southend Airport in line with the group’s target of reaching five million passengers per annum by February 2023.”

Earlier this week concerns were raised by potential flyers after it emerged no schedule had been published for European-bound Ryanair flights from Southend for next summer.

The airline, which is one year into a lucrative five-year deal with the airport, insisted that the schedule is being finalised and will be published very soon - although this is still yet to happen.

Warwick Brady, chief executive of Stobart Group, said: “Stobart Group has made considerable progress in the period.

“This is particularly in terms of the number of passengers that we have welcomed at London Southend Airport and the volume of waste fuel that we have been in a position to supply under contract.

“I am particularly encouraged by the quality of airline partners that we are now working with and the opportunity that brings to deliver future sustainable operating profits.”