Heathrow boss says naming Terminal 5 after King would create ‘nice symmetry’

Passengers check-in in terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport
Passengers check-in in terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport Credit: PA

Naming Heathrow’s Terminal 5 after the King would create “nice symmetry”, the airport’s boss said, following a report that such an offer was rejected due to Charles’ reluctance.

Chief executive John Holland-Kaye said the UK’s busiest airport has “a long association” with the royal family.

Heathrow wanted to mark the coronation by renaming Terminal 5 after the King, according to The Times.

But Charles was “said to be reluctant to accept” so Buckingham Palace “called in ministers to turn down the airport’s offer”, the newspaper reported.

Terminal 2 at the west London airport has been known as the Queen’s Terminal since a rebuilding project was completed in 2014.

Asked about the potential naming of Terminal 5, Mr Holland-Kaye said: “There would be a nice symmetry I think to have our two main terminals – Terminal 5 and Terminal 2 – named the King’s Terminal and the Queen’s Terminal.

“But that’s a matter for the Cabinet Office.”

He added: “We’ve had a long association with the royal family. We’re very proud of that.

“I think it’s great that we celebrate the coronation and so we will be doing this in other ways.”

There will be “flags, bunting and a party atmosphere” at the airport over the coronation weekend, Mr Holland-Kaye said.

He continued: “It is a big moment for the country. It’s also a fantastic catalyst for people to want to come and visit the UK.

“I hope we’ll see a lot of visitors from America coming over.”

It is understood that Heathrow’s offer in relation to the naming of Terminal 5 was not rejected on environmental grounds.

A Government spokesperson said applications for attributing royal titles are assessed against a strict criteria and are very rarely approved.

There have been no significant approvals in the last year, the spokesperson added.

One of the most recent was in 2017 when a jetty in Portsmouth was named after the Princess Royal.

Buckingham Palace was approached for a comment.

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