Flybe to axe 133 jobs in Scottish airports

Flybe are axing 133 jobs across four Scottish airports. Picture: Complimentary
Flybe are axing 133 jobs across four Scottish airports. Picture: Complimentary
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FLYBE announced today 133 job cuts across four Scottish airports, including the closure of its bases in Aberdeen and Inverness.

The redundancies are part of 500 announced by the ailing airline on Monday to cut costs.

They include 49 posts going at Edinburgh airport, 37 at Glasgow, 35 at Inverness and 12 in Aberdeen.

Flybe said talks with the unions Balpa, Unite and Prospect over the cuts had been “constructive”.

The airline’s bases in Guernsey, the Isle of Man, Jersey and Newcastle will also shut, with the biggest job losses proposed for its home base in Exeter, where 116 jobs will go.

Chief executive Saad Hammad said: “We are committed to connecting the UK’s regions and we intend to continue flying to these airports after the base closures.

“I know these proposals are creating great personal uncertainty but they are necessary to secure a long-term future for Flybe.

“I am grateful to the various union and staff representatives for the very constructive manner in which we have been able to commence the consultation process.

“I hope that the detail of the proposed base closures and staff cuts will further assist that process.”

Flybe said its Aberdeen base would close on 31 January, and its Inverness base on 31 March.

However, the airline was unable to say what impact the closures and job cuts would have on flights.

Aberdeen Airport managing director Carol Benzie said: “In the first instance, our thoughts go to the Flybe employees who face an uncertain future as a result of today’s announcement.

“As to what this means for the airport operation and Flybe customers we are still unsure. Any implications for the future of their routes remains unclear, but we are hopeful that Flybe will remain an important strategic partner at the airport.”

Fraser Grieve, Highlands & Islands manager for the Scottish Council Development and Industry (SCDI) said: “Whilst Flybe have proposed closing their bases at Inverness and Aberdeen, questions remain over the routes they operate and how these will be affected.

“Air connectivity is vital for the region’s economy, and SCDI will be working with others to make the strongest case for the future of our air links.”

The British Airline Pilots’ Association (Balpa) said the loss of 179 pilots jobs was “a blow to the entire profession”.

General Secretary Jim McAuslan, has said, ‘Flybe needs to get back on the right track, but it is extremely disappointing that redundancies will be needed to do that.

“Flybe plays an important part in connecting the countries, regions and islands of the UK, and it would harm the local economy of those areas if connections are lost.”

A spokesman for Highlands and Islands Airports, which runs Inverness airport, said: “It remains to be seen what, if any, impact this announcement will have on routes to and from the Highlands.

“In the meantime, passengers should continue to book with Flybe with confidence.

“We remain committed to working with Flybe to increase their presence at Inverness.”