Review of the year: Managing director of Stansted Airport looks back over 2014

Andrew Harrison. managing director at Stansted Airport

Andrew Harrison. managing director at Stansted Airport - Credit: Archant

The world of air travel and airports is always fast moving and continually evolving, and 2014 has been no exception.

The last 12 months, and second year of ownership by MAG, has seen Stansted once again become the UK’s fastest growing airport with passenger numbers increasing by over 11 per cent to nearly 20 million a year.

And the amount of cargo passing through Stansted also increased as the airport moved over 220,000 tonnes of goods and products during the year.

The upsurge in passenger numbers has been driven by MAG’s continuing commitment to work with existing airline partners to grow their route networks to better serve the region and provide passengers with the services they demand as well as attracting new airlines.

New initiatives such as Ryanair’s new family and business friendly programmes have also proved extremely popular with passengers.

Stansted’s £80 million project to transform the terminal building made excellent progress despite the rapid increase in passenger numbers and complexity of work.

The first phase of the re-vamped departure lounge opened in September with a host of leading travel brands joining World Duty Free’s new flagship store as the gateway to the new look Stansted. And in partnership with UK Border Force 15 new generation ePassport gates opened in August as part of the initial phase of an extended border control area to help speed passengers safely and securely through the immigration process.

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MAG’s community work continued at great pace as the airport team went out and about across the region to meet as many people as possible to build understanding of the airport’s operation and the role a successful international airport can play in supporting economic growth and social opportunities. Looking ahead to 2015, life at the airport promises to be just as action-packed and exciting.

The coming months will see the opening of a new passenger lounge, a £500,000 education centre, Flybe launch new services across the UK and, in the summer, Thomas Cook launch long-haul flights to the USA and Mexico.

Passengers will be able to enjoy the exciting new departure lounge following its completion in the autumn while the Airports Commission will issue its recommendations about the future of UK aviation after the general election. Just another quiet year at Stansted!

Andrew Harrison

Managing Director, Stansted Airport