London mayor opposes expansion of weekend flights at City Airport

London City Airport
Roberto La Rosa /

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is not backing extending the hours that London-City Airport (LCY) can operate at weekends.

In December 2022, London City Airport submitted plans to Newham Council, to fly on Saturday afternoon until 6.30pm, with an additional hour in summer for arrivals only.

Under current rules arrivals and departures cannot operate at the airport between 12.20pm on Saturday and 12.30pm on Sunday.

In a letter to Newham Council from the Greater London Authority (GLA) on March 20, 2023, it said the “application doesn’t comply with the London Plan”.

The London Plan is a strategy for the UK’s capital that sets out an economic, environmental, transport and social framework for development.

London City Airport is also requesting an increase in its annual passenger cap from 6.5 million to 9 million, although there will be no increase in the annual number of permitted flights, which will remain at 111,000.

In the letter to Newham Council, it said there was “no justification for ending the 24-hour ban”.

A letter by Zack Polanski, chair of the London Assembly’s Environment Committee, to Robert Sinclair, CEO at City Airport was also recently published.

“The evidence that we have heard indicates that your proposals are not aligned with the required level of ambition needed to reduce emissions and achieve net zero by 2030,” Polanski wrote. “As such we do not believe it is appropriate to increase the numbers of passengers at City Airport, or the number of flights from their current levels, regardless of previous caps.”

London City Airport’s application is still ongoing.

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