HUNDREDS of Scottish passengers had their travel plans ruined yesterday after flights to Bristol Airport were cancelled over concerns for the safety of its runway.
EasyJet cancelled eight flights between Bristol and Scotland yesterday, including all those to and from Edinburgh. Meanwhile, British Airways rerouted eight of its services to Birmingham.
Although airlines switched many of their routes to Birmingham or Cardiff, nearly all flights to Scotland were cancelled altogether rather than being diverted.
EasyJet's route from Belfast was diverted to Cardiff, but a spokesman urged Scottish passengers not to be upset that the airline had cancelled their flights completely.
She said: "We've moved 60% of flights to Cardiff, but we can't move the whole operation there. We had to make a decision. We chose to operate longer-distance flights from Cardiff, because it's easier for people to get to Edinburgh or Glasgow by other means than to get to Malaga.
"Around 500 passengers have been affected. We ask them for their patience and to look at this issue logically. We have to give priority to those who have no other way of getting to their destination. All passengers will be entitled to full refunds."
Bristol Airport said it expected 98 flights to be diverted to other airports yesterday and 28 flights to be cancelled. The problems began after it announced 17m runway resurfacing plans last October, with work scheduled to last for five months.
Airlines were last night due to decide on their Scottish schedules for today and will decide this afternoon how many flights will take off tomorrow, depending on the weather conditions.
Seven other airlines decided not to use the airport yesterday, because of worries about the ability of planes to brake in wet weather after the resurfacing work. They were XL, Thomsonfly, Thomas Cook, Balkan Airlines, First Choice, Air Malta and SN Brussels.
Yesterday both Edinburgh and Glasgow had two arrivals and two departures cancelled. All passengers are advised to contact their airlines and tour operators directly or to check information online at www.bristolairport.co.uk