Exeter Airport calls on the Government to give them further help to survive pandemic

Exeter Airport inside
Credit: ITV News West Country

Exeter Airport is calling for more Government support to ensure it survives the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. 

More than 90 jobs have been lost and passenger numbers have slumped - with a low of just nine passengers in the month of May - since the collapse of Flybe.

The growing number of European destinations on the 14-day quarantine list are also putting pressure on the regional airport.

While all these factors are pushing income down, the costs on the airport are sizable, with £629,000 spent a year on business rates alone.

East Devon District Council has been allowed the airport to defer a maximum payment of £180,000 but bosses are not sure if that will be enough.

Credit: ITV News West Country

The MP for East Devon, Simon Jupp, says it's vital the Government protects jobs and connectivity.

The same view has been expressedby the MP for St Austell and Newquay, Steve Double, who says: "If [regional airports] close this time they could possibly never reopen."

The list of routes on the departure board is much shorter these days. Credit: ITV News West Country

The former wartime airfield, where pilots once defended Britain's skies, is now facing its own battle for survival in the 21st century.

The final Flybe flight touched down on March 5th after the collapse of the Exeter-based airline. In May, at the height of the pandemic, just nine passengers took off.