Durham Tees Valley Airport restructures operations by dropping holiday flight service

Durham Tees Valley Airport in England has announced plans to restructure its operations by cancelling all mainstream holiday flights, and investing in a new layout.

The airport will scrap all mainstream holiday charter programmes from summer 2014, with the exception of Flybe flights operated on behalf of CITS to Jersey.

The airport's decision affects the flights of charter operator Thomson/First Choice and Balkan Holidays; a day prior to the decision of the airport was made public, Thomson announced the withdrawal of its services from the airport effective 2014.

Durham Tees airport plans to invest in a new layout that will have a terminal with smaller operational area; it intends to make the airport suitable for customers on scheduled flights.

The airport seeks to provide additional UK and global connections for the region's business community, which has a significant need to access international markets.

Passenger numbers at Durham Tees Valley Airport fell by 700,000 in seven years, and the airport's majority owner Peel Holdings has made two unsuccessful attempts to gain additional investment through the government's regional growth fund.

Durham Tees Valley Airport's managing director Steve Gill said that these steps were outlined following a difficult period for the airport. A thorough review of the whole site and the current operations was conducted and the decision was made in order to give the airport a strong foundation to help safeguard the future of aviation activity.

"These will enable us to work towards expanding and diversifying our aviation and non-aviation activities across a broader base and grow back passenger services," Gill said.

The strategic master plan will be available for public consultation from mid November.