Villagers concerned about future of airport and job losses as Durham Tees Valley axes charter flights (From Darlington and Stockton Times)
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Villagers concerned about future of airport and job losses as Durham Tees Valley axes charter flights
THERE was pessimism on the streets of Middleton-St-George today as villagers discussed the uncertain future of the airport next door.
News that charter flights have been axed at Durham Tees Valley raised concerns with its neighbours, with many believing it is a death knell for the once popular airport.
Pensioner Eileen Marsay said: “It is a shame it has been allowed to deteriorate like this. Eventually we won’t have an airport for general use at all.
“The future does not bode well and a lot of people could lose jobs.
“If it closes, I think they’ll use the land for housing.”
Concerns about job losses and the possibility of future housing developments on airport land were echoed by other villagers.
Alan Daniel said: “If these flights go, there will be nothing left, the airport will be closed next year and they’ll probably use it for housing, which we don’t want, there are already too many houses here.”
Christine Genery, barmaid at the village’s Havelock Arms, said: “I was born when the airport was Goosepool and my dad helped to lay the runways.
“If the airport closes, people here could lose their jobs and the way things are going, it probably could close.
“If it does, I hope they don’t start building housing, we don’t want any more, for goodness sake.”
Ward councillor Doris Jones urged the airport’s owners to be transparent about their plans.
She said: “If no airlines wanted to fly here or there were no customers, I could understand but that is not the case.
“This news has caused big suspicion about future plans. They are business developers rather than airport people and there is a lot of scope for them to have a business park rather than an airport.
“They need to account for their actions, come clean and tell people what is really going on as it is affecting the stability of the region.
“If the airport closed, it would be a major loss. We should be boosting business in the region by providing a decent airport link.”
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