London’s peripheral airports: part two – Luton rises; Southend for sale

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London has more commercial airports than probably any other city in the world – six in total – and it needs them because those airports host more passengers than anywhere else.

Most people are familiar with Heathrow and Gatwick, but there are three comparatively peripheral airports to the north and east, all more than 30 miles (48km) from the central district and each with a catchment area that includes non-London areas.

Two of them – Stansted and Luton have carved a niche for themselves in the low cost domain.

The third, Southend, was once a major airport in its own right, and had undergone a resurrection under new ownership. Now Southend will likely be put up for sale by those owners, which is another test of market sentiment for the industry.

Part one of this report considered developments at Stansted, while part two now focuses on Luton and Southend.  

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