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NEWS Last modified on February 9, 2018

London Luton sets new January traffic record and looks forward to milestone year

London Luton Airport has started the new year like it ended the last, with record traffic figures, as it handled over one million passengers in January for the first time in its history.

In total, 1,021,954 passengers (+3.6%) passed through the gateway in January to ensure that it has welcomed over one million passengers every month for 12 consecutive months.

These latest statistics come at the start of a landmark year for London Luton Airport (LLA) in which it will celebrate its 80th annivesary and complete the next stage of its redevelopment.
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Already this year, LLA has welcomed the Aviation Minister, Baroness Sugg, who toured the airport and viewed the progress of LLA’s current £150 million redevelopment programme. 

The investment will create a bigger and better terminal, increasing the airport’s annual capacity to 18 million passengers by 2020.

The newly-extended terminal building will open later this year with a variety of new shops and restaurants as well as more seating and additional boarding gates.

Separately, the airport hosted a week-long Westminster exhibition attended by a number of MPs including Chris Grayling, Secretary of State for Transport, and Gavin Shuker, MP for Luton South.

It highlighted LLA’s role in connecting Britain over the past 80 years and emphasised the need to improve rail connections to the airport or risk missing an opportunity to support future economic growth.
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However, the airport insists that "inadequate rail links" are significantly limiting its ability to provide the air capacity that UK travellers want and that the economy needs.

LLA is London’s fastest-growing major airport but is the only one without a direct, express-style rail service and it is calling for this oversight to be rectified.

In fact the airport is calling for the introduction of four fast trains per hour at Luton Airport Parkway station as part of the new East Midlands rail franchise.

More fast trains, it says, would give passengers a better experience, generate £110 million for the DfT and provide a boost to the local and national economies.
Luton security
And it claims that the benefits can be achieved through a simple timetable change and no capital expenditure.

Nick Barton, CEO of LLA, said: “This year is already off to a fantastic start. We’ve seen another record-breaking month, welcoming over one million passengers in January for the first time.

"This is yet more evidence of the continued demand for air travel, and another reminder of the UK’s urgent need for additional aviation capacity.
Luton runway
“Currently demand for air travel is outpacing capacity. Our current redevelopment and expansion will help to provide part of the solution. However, we also need improved rail links to Luton Airport Parkway.

"The new East Midlands franchise is a once in a decade opportunity to deliver the air capacity UK travellers want and that the economy needs. We can’t afford to miss it.”

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