The airport's £160m redevelopment could unlock some air capacity for the South East
The airport's £160m redevelopment could unlock some air capacity for the South East
Richard Bell

Luton Airport renews call for improved rail links following busiest ever May

London Luton Airport (LLA) welcomed 1,498,281 passengers last month to mark its busiest ever May.

The figure is 3.6% up on May 2017 and represents the 16th consecutive month that LLA has served more than a million people.

On the back of the announcement, LLA has renewed calls for improved rail access to Luton Airport Parkway (LAP) station.

The airport said that while its ongoing £160m redevelopment has the potential to unlock some air capacity for the South East, better rail links are essential for LLA to achieve its full potential – and renewing the East Midlands rail franchise offers a chance to address this.

The Department for Transport’s (DfT) recently published invitation to tender highlights the importance of improved air-rail links to both LLA and East Midlands Airport.

LLA is urging bidders for the franchise to include four fast trains every hour between LAP and central London, which it believes can be achieved with no capital expenditure.

Nick Barton, the airport’s chief exec, said: “The Cabinet’s recent approval of the third runway at Heathrow will not solve London’s capacity problems alone.

“Regional airports need to be able to meet their full potential, and improved rail links are essential to achieving that.”

He continued: “The DfT has recognised that in the East Midlands rail franchise and we hope the bidding rail companies will seize this once-in-a-decade opportunity to improve rail services for passengers and help ease the UK’s capacity crunch.”

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