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Old 14th May 2018, 22:15
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Once their free ride is over easyJet will return to Stansted
ASDF, you are assuming that easyJet's presence at STN is sustainable for this to happen, and I am genuinely not sure that it is. From what I can see, the easyJet operation at STN is sustained only by the need to hold slots for nightstop aircraft at STN which preclude Ryanair and Jet2 being able to grow further. This blocker imposes limits on Ryanair's growth potential at STN and an almost total blocker on the Jet2's growth, both arising from lack of STN slots for additional STN-based aircraft.

I suspect if economic considerations alone were to prevail, easyJet would no longer have a base at STN and might perhaps serve it from AMS, BFS, EDI, GLA etc but would relocate based aircraft to SEN and LTN in equal measure. The fact that the STN base remains today is, I believe (but can't prove, before anyone asks me), testament to its blocking power which would see easyJet's overall marketshare from London eroded by growth of Ryanair and Jet2 on slots that easyJet would release if it moved out. That those slots remain a scarce resource is both a reason why easyJet won't pull what it has today out of STN but also a blocker to shifting based easyJet's own LON-based aircraft en masse from the likes of SEN to STN at the same time.
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Old 15th May 2018, 17:35
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An interesting interview with SEN's new Aviation Business Development Director - Bernard Lavelle Interview
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Old 15th May 2018, 18:24
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Warwick Bradyís comments are being misinterpreted here. Stobart Groupís stated aim is to build value and make strategic asset disposals to pay the dividend. It should come as no surprise that they would want to dispose of the airline Ė and the airport Ė one day. When that day will be is the bigger question.
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Old 15th May 2018, 21:21
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Bernard Lavelle seems to be bursting with ideas. Much of it sounds like wishful thinking, Southend isn't London City after all. But, then again, he's done it before and I'm sure he's right about needing to educate some airlines who still think Southend has a 5,250 foot runway. Good luck to him. He is realistic about the time it will take, 15-20 years.
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Old 15th May 2018, 22:20
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Just a point, I believe (unless the 2 EJETS have changed in the last few days) that the 2 currently at SEN are not part of the 3 that have been bought by the group, but are on dry lease from flyBe, the 3 actual aircraft should arrive over the summer, I'd imagine they would end up on the EI register but I am not sure.
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Old 16th May 2018, 07:23
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Strategic asset disposal

Originally Posted by flight_mode View Post
Warwick Bradyís comments are being misinterpreted here. Stobart Groupís stated aim is to build value and make strategic asset disposals to pay the dividend. It should come as no surprise that they would want to dispose of the airline Ė and the airport Ė one day. When that day will be is the bigger question.
I think we all understand the business model. A company exists to return value to shareholders and the sale of the airport will hopefully be the shareholder's biggest return. My concern is that whilst the airport is loss-making it relies upon both the disposal of an ever dwindling pot of assets and the other Stobart divisions supporting the Aviation division.

The asset pot is near exhausted and will last another 24 months, maybe longer, and is to be used to fund the dividend. The combined operating divisions made a loss this year with Aviation sucking any profit out of the other businesses.

Unless the jewel in the crown (LSA) starts to turn a profit very quickly the whole project is in jeopardy. I can't see 2.5m pax by the end of this year. I certainly can't see 5m pax by the end of 2022.

I know everyone is working hard at Stobart to make the dream a reality but something is stopping the airlines from turning up. I have my view on what that something is but I'll open the floor to others to provide their insight.
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Old 16th May 2018, 08:35
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OK, I'll take the bait. Well, what could be stopping the airlines turning up? One or more of the following (in no particular order) may be involved:

1. Availability of slots at well established and well known London airports with longer runways.
2. Lack of suitable aircraft types in the fleet to operate from SEN.
3. A perceived unsuitability of SEN for A320s and B737s.
4. The dominant presence of Easyjet.
5. Lack of awareness of the advantages of SEN.
6. A risk averse "We're not going to be the first new airline to operate from SEN, let others try and we'll wait and see" attitude.
7. Fear of the impact of Brexit on airline operations
8. Awareness of SEN's failure to rise much above the one million pax mark over the past five years.
9. Bad luck
10. Poor management negotiating skills
11. Lack of rail services at the start and end of the day
12. Inadequate road link to London

No doubt there are many more, and I'm aware that some of the above are contradictory. I'm hopeful that if Air Malta's routes can succeed it may attract others. Mr Lavelle is also a talented chap it seems, so fingers crossed...........
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Old 16th May 2018, 09:34
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My money's on 3,7 and 11/12.
The uncertainty of future relations and the unknown of how aircraft will perform will no doubt be the main point
Even if you can get round that, what good is flying from an airport that the passengers themselves can't get to?
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Old 16th May 2018, 09:51
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So once again this particular hamster wheel starts turning. How many times has this all been debated over the past few years ? Same old posters, same old stuff. And none of it will make the slightest difference in the real world. But it will certainly bring in the trolls.

I am out of here.
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Old 16th May 2018, 10:14
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Originally Posted by Tagron View Post
So once again this particular hamster wheel starts turning. How many times has this all been debated over the past few years ? Same old posters, same old stuff. And none of it will make the slightest difference in the real world. But it will certainly bring in the trolls.

I am out of here.
Tagron so true. We all know SEN has some weaknesses, but so do STN and LTN. It's almost as though some of these posters WANT SEN to fail!
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Old 16th May 2018, 10:22
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Originally Posted by asdf1234 View Post
I know everyone is working hard at Stobart to make the dream a reality but something is stopping the airlines from turning up. I have my view on what that something is but I'll open the floor to others to provide their insight.
I think that's a fair comment worthy of discussion, even though I don't agree with much of what you say in general.

I know the Monarch failure last autumn has been suggested as affecting SEN's ability to attract new operators this year and some here have scoffed at that as being just another excuse. Fair enough if you don't know the facts of the matter but I'm sure that two other operators would be present at SEN this summer, one of them in quite a big way, had Monarch's failure not released a substantial number of slots at two other LON airports. As far as other things are concerned which may be creating difficulties in attracting new operators I would suggest items 3, 7 & 11 from the Barling Magna list. I know for a fact that item 3 was the initial perception of one of the operator's who planned a SEN operation until Monarch's demise and it wasn't until their technical team visited that they appreciated the physical realities that were not apparent in the raw data. Item 7 is an intangible disincentive but I'm sure it will have had the effect of inducing caution to a greater extent than would otherwise currently be the case. Item 11 is something which I don't doubt has been a drag on SEN's attractiveness as it will be seen as making the task of maximising passenger numbers/revenue more difficult than it would otherwise be. Whether Greater Anglia have the desire, or can be persuaded by Stobart, to provide earlier and later trains within the 2019 timetable remains to be seen. I suppose if and when SEN reaches a certain critical mass coach services may also be on offer but we're probably some way off that yet.

I would add an item 13 which is the lack of a grooved runway which should preclude WET WET WET declarations in all but extreme situations. The supposed BBA surface does not seem to live up to its supposed performance in that regard and action on that is overdue in my opinion.
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Old 16th May 2018, 10:28
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Originally Posted by Plane.Silly View Post
Even if you can get round that, what good is flying from an airport that the passengers themselves can't get to?
I think that's a little strong. There's a much improved road that does the job for now. All London's airports have traffic issues. And the rail link is perfect for those flying to SEN on aircraft based elsewhere with early morning trains to London and late evening returns. Perhaps best not to mention the weekends! All that's missing is frequent coach services, but that's chicken and egg.
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Old 16th May 2018, 12:33
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Ever wish you'd kept quiet?

Buses will replace trains for four months mid week on Greater Anglia between Shenfield and Southend | Echo
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Old 16th May 2018, 13:15
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7. Fear of the impact of Brexit on airline operations
That will be the standard response to justify failure. Brexit hasn't stopped Wizz from adding 1.4 million seats into Luton this year. No London airports are showing any signs of a passenger drop. All the London Airport either want to or have started expansion work despite Brexit.

Four to add to the list
13) No CAT 3 and yes Southend does get fogged out
14) Not 24 hour
15/ History of failed routes
16) No motorway passing the front door

Bad news about the rail closures right in the middle of the summer season.
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Old 16th May 2018, 14:20
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A good Echo headline as ever. It's the last four trains of the evening Monday to Wednesday that are replaced by buses between SEN and Wickford. Ironically the last bus will depart SEN 10 minutes later than the last scheduled train that it replaces, so less chance of missing it!
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Old 16th May 2018, 16:51
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So the good news for the airport but not the locals is that for the next 3 months SEN will be the only London Airport that will accept overnight biz jets. The airport should do very well out of this and no doubt Stobart will claim all the credit.
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Old 16th May 2018, 17:02
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3. A perceived unsuitability of SEN for A320s and B737s.
5. Lack of awareness of the advantages of SEN.
Iím sure all European airlines are perfectly aware of SEN, itís location, connectivity and technical characteristics. Iím really surprised that ExpressFlight said the mystery airline didnít know until they showed upÖ thatís not normal.

We use software tool from Sabre, within an hour you can have a route fully modelled considering 100íof internal and external variables; demand, pricing, local connectivity, fleet, crew, slots, gates, freight, route connectivity, costs, perf etc and validate the economics of a route. You can even see how it will affect established routes to nearby airports like LCY. If I type in ZRH - LON I see a forecast for all London airports, including SEN. With our dataset the numbers donít come close to a valid business case however, they may stack up perfectly for another operator.

One might argue the use of tools like AirVision are detrimental to SEN because itís instantly dismissed by the software. On the other hand, these tools prove time and time again to be accurate to within a few % so airlines trust them. All Ďflag carriersí and major LoCoís use tools like AirVision to find new route opportunities.
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Old 16th May 2018, 17:50
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Originally Posted by flight_mode View Post
I’m sure all European airlines are perfectly aware of SEN, it’s location, connectivity and technical characteristics. I’m really surprised that ExpressFlight said the mystery airline didn’t know until they showed up… that’s not normal.
It was the fact that they didn't realise that the paved runway length including starter extension is nearly 2,000 m despite the declared distances being the Code C limiting 1,799 m. They seemed to feel more comfortable with a runway of that declared length being set within a greater length of pavement. Whether they should have been made aware of it earlier is not for me to judge.
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Old 16th May 2018, 18:54
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Iím sure all European airlines are perfectly aware of SEN, itís location, connectivity and technical characteristics. Iím really surprised that ExpressFlight said the mystery airline didnít know until they showed upÖ thatís not normal.
The interview by Bernard Lavelle doesn't agree - post 1402
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Old 17th May 2018, 08:40
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Originally Posted by LTNman View Post
So the good news for the airport but not the locals is that for the next 3 months SEN will be the only London Airport that will accept overnight biz jets. The airport should do very well out of this and no doubt Stobart will claim all the credit.
why is that LTNman. .? And donít worry about the locals. No likes the mob who live up on the marine estate , they are always moaning ...😏
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