Government prepares to step in for Stansted

Hotel News - 14/02/2006

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The government has placed the future of British airports at the heart of its priorities by declaring its willingness to intervene over a Spanish company's bid for ownership of Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted.

The Ferroivial consortium announced its intention to buy British airports operator BAA last week, but the government has said it will step in to ensure the deal does not threaten existing plans to develop Stansted as a major London gateway.

'We would be very concerned if it emerged that they wanted to milk the airport for cash and not continue with the investment BAA has agreed to,' said a Department of Transport source.

BAA, which was privatised in 1987, is currently spending £3 billion on Stansted and £4 billion building a fifth terminal at Heathrow.

The government is committed to raising the number of UK airport passengers from 215 million a year today to around 500 million by 2030.

With the development of the major gateways a headline feature of Britain's public transport strategy, the market in airport hotels is becoming increasingly competitive.

Travellers should check out the best deals for airport hotels online.

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