Goverment Backs Luton Airport Expansion Plans

1 May 2014, 08:23 | Updated: 2 May 2014, 07:07

The government has given its approval for Luton Airport to expand.

The government's backed plans for Luton airport to expand, which would see it increase its passengers numbers to 18 million a year.

Airport bosses say their plans could also mean 45,000 extra flights and bring more than 5,000 new jobs to the area.

In December Luton Borough Council backed the airport's plans but Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles asked for the decision to grant planning permission to be reviewed.

But campaigners against expansion say it'll bring more noise, with more planes flying over parts of parts of Hertfordshire too, including Hemel Hempstead and St Albans.

Glyn Jones, Managing Director of the Airport said: "We are delighted that after a thorough process, the Council can proceed to grant planning permission for London Luton. We see this as a real vote of confidence in the Airport and its future, underlining the determination of our new owners, Ardian and Aena, to develop and radically improve London Luton and deliver a better airport experience for our passengers in the years to come.

"The opportunities it brings for the local economy in terms of jobs and investment are significant, and Luton can now press ahead with making its local airport bigger and better, while remaining a good neighbour."

The airport, which is the UK's fifth largest, handled 9.7m passengers in 2013.

The airport's plans to also build a new dual carriageway from the Holiday Inn roundabout to the central terminal area.