A protest is taking place outside Southend Airport over easyJet's plans to potentially close it's base in Southend.

The demonstration, which began at 10.30am this morning, comes after a vote in no confidence against easyJet's chief operating officer Peter Bellew was favoured by the airline's staff.


With 1,290 easyJet cabin crew jobs potentially being lost across the country and bosses planning to withdraw operations from Southend, Newcastle, and Stansted, protests are being held at each of the airports.

Union Unite members are angry that while their jobs and incomes at the airline are under attack, easyJet paid £174 million in dividends to shareholders at the start of the Covid-19 crisis.

Frustrations have also been aired surrounding Mr Bellew's handling of the coronavirus pandemic, and his attempt to bypass easyJet’s recognised trade unions Unite and pilots' union BALPA.


Councillor Daniel Cowan, who is in support of the movement, has said around 30 people have already arrived outside Southend Airport to take a stand against the cuts.

He said: "There are about 30 people here so far chanting out out out, and there is quite an atmosphere.

"I believe that easyJet should be protecting jobs, retaining them will be vital for the recovery of aviation after the pandemic.

"I think the cuts are quite rash, prompt and will cause economic misery to the families and staff that have been affected.

"I hope they will reconsider and hope they will retain the jobs and the base in Southend."


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Photo by Greg Myers

The ballot of more than 3,000 Unite cabin crew members at the airline was 99.32 per cent in favour of the no confidence motion.

The pilot’s union BALPA conducted a similar ballot which also returned a near unanimous vote of no confidence in Mr Bellew.

easyJet and Southend Airport have been contacted for comment.