Isle of Man News - POSTED Thu 06-08-2009

Manx2 Steps in to 'Save' Newcastle Link

by Liz Corlett

Manx2 Steps in to 'Save' Newcastle Link

Following the news that air services between the Isle of Man and Newcastle will cease later this month, Manx2 has stepped in to ensure that this key Island air link will continue.

 

This week, Eastern Airways announced that they would be withdrawing from the route at the end of August. Manx2 is starting a limited

service to Newcastle on Thursday 27th August.

 

“The knock-on effect of losing a route can be severe on Manx businesses, tourism and leisure travel,” said Manx2 Chairman Noel Hayes.

 

“As a Manx company, we always try to do what’s right for the Island as well as for our own business. We are stepping in to keep the Newcastle route alive although, at present, we can only commit to running services until after the new year holiday period.

 

"However, we will use the next few weeks to actively consult with all stakeholders including customers on the route and we’ll be working to put together a plan for the long term sustainable development of this route.

 

“While we warmly welcome Newcastle passengers on our flights from Leeds or Blackpool, we know that those airports are two and three hours away from Newcastle and, in reality, many passengers will simply not travel to the Isle of Man, which is not good for tourism, for the economy or for many families with ties to the area.”

 

The flights will take just under an hour, costing from £39.95 (including all charges) one way, and will depart from Ronaldsway at 8am on Mondays, 1.30pm on Thursdays and Fridays, and 4pm on Sunday afternoons.

 

The return flights will leave Newcastle at 9.15am, 2.45pm and 5.20pm.

 

Mr Hayes continued, “We have demonstrated on our Blackpool, East Midlands, Leeds and Gloucester routes how Manx2’s formula of friendly and punctual service combined with low fares is what customers wants on the Islands’ smaller routes.

 

"We think we can bring equal success to the Newcastle route but we need time to thoroughly review the situation.

 

"We believe that with the support of the Island and by growing the number of visitors we will be able to make Newcastle a permanent addition to our network and the eighth year-round destination served by Manx2.com.”

 

Dave Laws, chief executive of Newcastle International Airport, said, “We are very pleased that Manx2 have stepped in to keep this vital route open. 

 

"Links between the Isle of Man and North East England are essential for many businesses in our region. 

 

"It is especially important during a period of recession that we look to retain and enhance the region’s connectivity to destinations such as this, in order to ensure that the North East is in a position to emerge strongly from the current downturn. 

 

"We will be working closely with Manx2 to ensure this route is a long-term success.”

Pictured: Noel Hayes, Chairman of Manx2.com.

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