Carlisle Lake District Airport has made history after launching commercial flights for the first time in more than 25 years this morning. The inaugural service to Dublin Airport took off following a blessing from The Archdeacon of Carlisle, The Venerable Lee Townend.
The Stobart Group-owned and operated airport teamed-up with Loganair to offer air links to and from Dublin, London Southend Airport and Belfast City Airport, opening Cumbria and the Lake District region to the South East of England, Northern Ireland and The Republic of Ireland.
The airport, which once served as an RAF airfield, was transformed thanks to a new and modern terminal, its own Borderlands Café and new runways and taxiways.
Amongst other top attractions and business destinations, Carlisle Lake District Airport is situated next to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites – the Lake District National Park and Hadrian’s Wall, the former frontier of the Roman Empire in the UK.
The region’s businesses, including BAE Systems at Barrow-in-Furness and Sellafield, will also benefit from quick, easy and affordable flights. Routes went on sale earlier in the year via www.loganair.co.uk, with fares to Belfast City starting from £39.99 and to Dublin and London Southend from £44.99 – including 20kg of baggage allowance.
Some of Cumbria’s best-known producers, such as The Lakes Distillery and Grasmere Gingerbread, are displaying at the airport as part of a celebration of the region today.
Kate Willard, Director of Partnership Development for Stobart Group, said: “We are made up to see this amazing project launch today. Not only is this airport a significant new part of the Northern Powerhouse’s transport infrastructure – it is also a shining beacon of confidence and pride for Cumbria, Carlisle, the wider Lake District region and the Borderlands.
“I would also like to pay tribute to our passionate and amazing workers and thank all of those many individuals, organizations and businesses – including our partner Local Authorities and the Cumbria LEP – who have held our hands through this long journey. Thank you.”
Jonathan Hinkles, managing director at Loganair, said: “This is an historic day for both Loganair and Carlisle Lake District Airport as the first commercial air services for 26 years take to the skies.
“These three routes will be a complete game-changer for the region’s connectivity with London and Ireland – extremely beneficial for the business community and highly convenient for tourists booking breaks to the Lake District.
“Congratulations to everyone for working so hard to make this possible. We’re very much looking forward to welcoming the first customers onboard.”