A SIX-figure deal has been struck to restart cargo flights at Coventry Airport.
Sixteen jobs have been created after flights have been introduced to Maastricht in the Netherlands, Lille in France and Dublin after a deal was agreed with Atlantic Airlines. Sir Peter Rigby, owner of Coventry Airport, said it was a statement of intent to take the airport back to full operation.
“This is our first step on the way to becoming a commercially active airport once again,” he said.
“At the moment we have flying schools, business jets, general aviation and helicopter activity but signing the contract with Atlantic Airlines is an important milestone in terms of the airport moving back to where it was previously.
“Cargo services were moved to Birmingham Airport when Coventry Airport closed temporarily in December 2009 and it has been a target of mine to see these flights return to Coventry since I took over the airport last year.”
Bespoke Distribution Aviation (BDA), which is chartering the majority of space on the flights, has also moved all of its UK operational services to Rowley Road at Coventry Airport.
Marc Watkins, business development manager at Coventry Airport, said the site’s central location in England was crucial in re starting cargo flights.
“As a result of the resumption of cargo flights, we are already talking to other airlines to gain further business,” he added.
Atlantic Airlines’ general manager Greg Little added: “We are delighted to return to Coventry Airport, which is our engineering base, and centre of operations.
“We will be working closely with our customers and the airport team to develop additional air cargo services now that the airport has regained the capability to support them.”