- The Government’s multimillion-pound support scheme for airports has now opened – with Gatwick Airport set to receive up to £8 million this year.
- The scheme reflects the aviation sector’s valuable contribution to the UK economy, and will help to ease pressure on airports hit by the pandemic.
Henry Smith MP has welcomed an announcement from Transport Secretary Grant Shapps that Gatwick Airport is now able to apply for a Government grant worth up to £8 million per business, helping to protect jobs and the local economy in Crawley.
The Airport and Ground Operators Support Scheme, which opened on Friday 29th January, will help Gatwick (and other commercial airports across England) to cover losses on costs caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, including airfield operations, contracted services such as airfield and runway maintenance, and business rate bills.
Airports and ground handlers can apply to the scheme on GOV.UK, and if successful, should receive their funding by the end of the financial year.
The financial support scheme, which follows the Government’s extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention (furlough) Scheme, is open for applications until 21st February 2021.
This investment will help support Gatwick Airport following the introduction of international travel restrictions designed to protect public health and prevent the spread of Covid-19 as the Government continues to roll out its world-leading vaccination programme.
“I’m pleased that Gatwick Airport will receive up to £8 million to help it protect jobs during these challenging times.
“This funding offers vital support for Gatwick Airport – which supports so many jobs and businesses in Crawley.
“The Government has provided unprecedented levels of support to protect jobs and businesses through the pandemic, and this latest support will be hugely important for helping Crawley to build back better after coronavirus.
“As Crawley MP and Chair of the Future of Aviation All-Party Parliamentary Group I’ve continued to urge Government to ensure support for the industry and this will remain my call to ministers.”
The Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, commented;
“A thriving aviation industry has been central to the success of this country and while we recognise the testing conditions airports are currently facing as a result of the pandemic, I believe that the sector will be ready to bounce back once restrictions are lifted.
“Today’s scheme is another step in the right direction, providing vital support for an industry that is raring to get back to business, once it is safe to do so.”