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Shoreham flights to Paris suspended

Brighton City Airways has announced that from next Tuesday it will temporarily suspend its recently launched services between Brighton and Paris.

The airport in Shoreham has blamed ongoing French customs and immigration delays in setting up a point of entry at Paris Pontoise airport.

Just two weeks before we launched the airline in March, we were advised by the French authorities that there would be a short delay of a couple of weeks before a customs and immigration port of entry was in place at Paris Pontoise.

However, eight weeks later, this intolerable issue remains in place and with no firm date set for a resolution.

In the meantime, we have been obliged to land in another French airport – usually Rouen or Le Touquet – en route to Pontoise and the authorities have very rarely come aboard to check passports.

This has meant having two take offs and climbs instead of one, longer flight times, extra airport fees and extra maintenance costs, all of which add up to a single flight to Paris costing us 60 per cent more than a direct flight would cost, never mind the inconvenience for passengers.

We are truly sad to suspend the flights, not least because our ticket sales are over target and the demand for this airline is proven to be there, but we are forced to postpone flights until the issue is solved at Paris Pontoise.

– Jonathan Candelon of Brighton City Airways

Statue to Paris cab drivers to be unveiled

The statue of St Fiacre, the patron saint of gardening, will be unveiled next month Credit: Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

A small stone statue of St Fiacre, the patron saint of gardeners and Paris cab-drivers, will be unveiled in Portsmouth next month. The statue will be revealed at a ceremony in the Porter's Garden at the city's Historic Dockyard on February 6.

St Fiacre is believed to have been born in Ireland in the late 6th century, later sailing to France in search of closer solitude for his devotions, where he made himself a cell with a garden, and established a chapel and hospice for travellers.

The cab connection originates from the naming of French cabs as Fiacres, so called because the first establishment to let coaches on hire in the mid-17th century was in the Rue Saint-Martin, near the Hotel Saint-Fiacre in Paris.

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All aboard the Shoreham flight to Paris

Shoreham Airport in Sussex - currently home to light aircraft only - declared itself ready for major expansion today with plans to start daily flights to Paris next year.

Explorer and aviation enthusiast Neil Laughton is launching Brighton City Airways. He plans four flights a day to Pontoise-Cormeille aerodrome, 16 miles north-west of the French capital.

And if the airline succeeds, there may be flights from Shoreham to other European cities. Derek Johnson has the story and speaks to Neil and Jonathon Candelon of Brighton City Airways.

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