Sunday, February 12, 2012

Our Airport, DTV or Teesside

After months of uncertainty over its viability and wondering whether we'd even have an airport in the Tees Valley in a few months' time, Friday's announcement of the sale of Shares to Peel Investments brings some relief.  Sadly, it doesn't bring the certainty we crave.  The airport is undoubtedly of great value to some people in the area.  We know for instance of businesses in the borough who find the ability to fly their staff anywhere in the world from an airport on their doorstep a huge advantage.  There are holidaymakers who enjoy the convenience of flying from a local airport, but there are far more who complain that they can't fly to where they want to go.
So what can we expect now?  I don't know, I'm not on the inside of Peel Investments and I have no way of knowing what their plans are.  I do know what I hope for.  I hope that they will work with KLM to promote the international possibilities for flights from Teesside; I hope they will look for other possibilities for commercial flights to broaden the opportunities for holiday travel at reasonable prices; I hope they'll work seriously with the local authorities to develop uses for the remainder of the site in order to supplement the income and increase the viability of the site as a whole; and I'd like them to stop calling it Durham Tees Valley - it has nothing to do with Durham and everything to do with Teesside.  Let's not put obstacles in the path of tourists finding us!
And at some point in the not too distant future I'd love all the necessary bodies to agree and act on putting a rail link nearer to the terminal building instead of so far away that it's a struggle to see the terminal from the platform and certainly too far to walk with luggage.

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