The UK Airport Trying to Keep Things Positive…and Local

With a map of recovery from COVID being announced in the UK this week, many travelers have been booking flights and looking to a future without coronavirus. 

It’s a time for light-heartedness and hope here in the UK, as the end of a pandemic that has plagued travel plans and the aviation industry seems to be nigh. On the contrary, news from UK airlines seems to mix both good and bad across the board.

UK airport
| © Sarah Caldecott

What happened in the UK this week?

On Monday, the 22nd of February 2021, the UK Boris Johnson’s prime minister released his outline for a lockdown road map – a guide that would end the third lockdown, and hopefully this time for good. Although in the plan, the overall message changes from Stay Home to Stay Local on the 29th March 2021, Johnson stated that there would be no international holidays until the 17th of May. Alongside the strict quarantine rules introduced earlier this month, the travel delay may be another heavy blow to the aviation industry. 

However, in Darlington, Tees Valley, one airport has been trying to look at a creative way to spend their time during the pandemic.

The good things first.

UK Airport
A heritage site to be preserved. | © Mirrorpix

Teesside International Airport, in north-east England, has been turning its attention to its community as it continues to update its interior. The airport was once an RAF base and is enriched with the history and the heritage of the area; it’s very embedded in local life.

What’s happening at Teesside Airport?

Firstly, local businesses are set to prosper in the airport, as a new shop is set to open. The store will sell items from independent retailers, thus showcasing what Teesside offers, with local artwork and stock from nearby brands. It will be open for international travelers when restrictions have been lifted, and people can fly in and out of the UK again.

Teesside Airport
A long time in the community. | © Evening Gazette

Secondly, at the start of February, Teesside Airport created a competition for the public to name their new bar. The winner will win flights to one of Loganair’s destinations. Teesside airport receives a major redevelopment and just in time for international travel to pick back up again. It seems the airport has been listening to the public’s feedback. Consequently, the airport’s name was reverted to its original title after a poll indicated 93% of locals preferred the former. 

News from Teesside this week

This week, the airport announced the shortlist for the brand new bar’s name. The four potential titles include: Goosepool, McMullen, The Maple Leaf, and Final Call, and the decision has been left up to the locals to decide.

Positive and Local
New updates to the airport… | © via Tees Valley Business Club

Alongside the bar, the airport is also getting a revamp with its check-in area and security hall. There will be a new duty-free shop, restaurant, private lounge, and coffee shop.

A positive impact during an uncertain time

The bar competition’s naming has certainly kept everyone busy in the local area and perhaps revamped an excitement for travel and spending time in the airport. It comes at a great time alongside the announcement of potential international travel again, if everything goes according to plan. The new store opening is also a great incentive to local businesses and offers hope to those in the local area affected by coronavirus’s impact.

Should airports be looking at helping their community as well as trying to profit during a troubling time? Let us know your thoughts below!

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Olivia Newman
Olivia Newman
Olivia is a creative writer from London who loves to travel! She has a background in digital marketing, journalism and tutoring, and studied an MA in Creative Writing in Portsmouth. You'll often find her writing, reading or booking her next flight!


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