Shrinking not sprouting – Brussels struggles on some UK short haul routes post-Brexit

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Rightly or wrongly, 'Brexit' (the departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union in Jan-2021) is often blamed for the UK's many ills, and sometimes for those of other countries.

It has certainly played its part in the diminution of air travel between the UK and Belgium, although the number of services has declined radically in the last decade - long before Brexit was delivered.

One of those services is between Brussels - Belgium and the EU's capital - and Birmingham, one of the UK's major cities, with a wide catchment area across the central part of England.

That the two should not be connected by air seems implausible. But that is the case from the end of Mar-2024, when Brussels Airlines withdraws its service (one that is not guaranteed to return for next northern winter).

As this report shows, Brexit has certainly played a role in this decision, but there are numerous other factors that are a microcosm of a collective threat to routes such as this - not only in the UK, but more widely across Europe.

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