The launch of passenger flights from Carlisle Lake District Airport next year will have a “huge impact” on Cumbria’s economy, a leading figure has said during a visit.
Nigel Wilkinson of Windermere Lake Cruises and Chair of the Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Visitor Economy Advisory Group, made the comments as he visited the site on Friday to learn more about the plans to start flights in the summer.
A £13m investment from airport owner Stobart Group, combined with £4.75m of funding from Cumbria LEP is being invested in a new terminal building and upgraded runway to that larger passenger planes can land at the airport.
Mr Wilkinson, who is managing director of Windermere Lake Cruises, and other members of Cumbria LEP’s Rural and Visitor Economy Advisory Groups met with Kate Willard, Head of Corporate Projects at Stobart Group to learn more about where the Growth Deal funding was going, and its wider impact for the airport and Cumbria.
“Carlisle Lake District Airport will have a huge impact on Cumbria’s visitor economy,” he said.
“Increasing the numbers of high spending international visitors is a key target within the LEP’s Rural and Visitor Economy Growth Plan. We welcome the opportunity to work with Stobart Aviation at this early stage to ensure the airport works within the context of the visitor economy.”
The development of the airport, will give passengers the opportunity to fly to London, Belfast and Dublin, and onwards to some USA cities.
Ms Willard said she was delighted to host the visit from Cumbria LEP and to work closely with businesses across the county, including those from the visitor economy.
“This visit demonstrates that Stobart is very excited about local partnerships and engaging with Cumbrian businesses to make thethe brilliant and sustainable success that Cumbria needs and deserves. We look forward to working with partners in the visitor economy over these next months to help develop packages and promotions to make sure that our air services match the needs of our visitors, that we are able to attract new visitors and that ultimately, we are able to support the economy."