Birmingham Airport has been awarded ‘Airport of the Year’ at the UK National Transport Awards, in recognition for excellence and its ongoing major improvement programme.
At an awards ceremony in London last night (Thursday), the Airport’s CEO, Paul Kehoe, proudly received the accolade from The Rt Hon Simon Burns MP, Minister of State for Transport, in front of a 600 strong audience of transport leaders and Politicians, including the new Secretary of State for Transport, The Rt Hon Patrick McLoughlin MP, who gave the keynote speech.
Birmingham beat off stiff competition in its category from Manchester, Stansted, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen Airports, all battling to win this significant industry title.
The 2012 National Transport Awards were supported by the Department for Transport (DfT) and judged by members of the DfT, Passenger Focus, Atkins Highways & Transportation and Transport Times – the creator of the awards programme.
Paul Kehoe, CEO of Birmingham Airport said: “It’s fantastic to be recognised by the UK’s transport industry as Airport of the Year, particularly in such a strong category. The last few years have been incredibly challenging for all airports and we know from passengers that the investments we’ve made have been right – now we’ve had recognition from our industry peers that we’ve moved in the right direction too.
The next 12 months will be vitally important for the aviation industry as Government sets out the shape of future airport capacity. Birmingham Airport has ready solutions available right now. We have the capacity, connectivity, and business plan to resolve the industry’s short-term supply-side constraints so being given this accolade certainly gives us the recognition that we can play an important role in this new landscape.”
Birmingham Airport has invested £260m over the last few years and is making a further £100m commitment to extend its existing runway, which will allow aircraft to fly direct to the West Coast of the States, China and South Africa. The Airport currently handles nine million passengers per year, and has the infrastructure to handle double this today. When the extended runway is complete in 2014, Birmingham Airport would have the capability to handle beyond thirty six million.
Professor David Begg, Chair of the awards judging panel and Publisher of Transport Times, said: “Under challenging economic circumstances Birmingham Airport has shown confidence and commitment throughout the last 12 months and has taken innovative approaches to its development. Clearly, Birmingham Airport has an important role to play in future UK airport strategy and it is making the right investments now to take on this position.”