JLA share lockdown update as small number of flights continue

The current lockdown in the UK means nobody should be travelling expect for in essential circumstances.

Last week the Foreign Office changed its travel guidance, advising against all non-essential global travel indefinitely.

The travel ban was initially put in place on March 17 for a period of 30 days, but the advice has now been extended with no end date in sight.

The aviation industry has been hit particularly hard as a result of the pandemic, as countries closed their borders and the majority of flights have come to a standstill.

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Liverpool John Lennon airport during lockdown

Despite the dramatic reduction in flights and passenger numbers, airports across the country including Liverpool John Lennon Airport remain open for business.

To find out what business is still taking place at the airport and which flights are still arriving and departing there, we approached the airport.

Here’s what they had to say.

What flights are still arriving and departing from the airport?

On April 2, a spokesperson from Liverpool John Lennon Airport confirmed that flights with Loganair were travelling between Liverpool and the Isle of Mann, while Wizz Air were also operating flights between Liverpool and three destinations in Romania.

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However, in a new update this week, the airport said only flights between the Isle of Man and Liverpool are now operating.

An airport spokesperson said: "At present we expect these flights to continue until advised otherwise.

"We are not currently expecting any rescue flights over the coming days."

Photos taken inside the airport during lockdown this week show it looking deserted

How many staff members are still working at the airport and what other changes have been made?

The main terminal building at Liverpool John Lennon Airport has been temporarily closed.

A spokesperson from the airport, said: "We’ve temporarily closed the main terminal building too as so few passengers are passing through now, with passengers now using one of the business aviation facilities to help save costs.

"With agreement from the various Trade Unions that we work with, the company has been able to take advantage of the Government Job Retention scheme with 60% of all company employees now on furlough."

The runway at Liverpool John Lennon Airport

They added: "The remainder, whilst also retaining 80% of their salary, are either continuing to work and maintain airport operations on site adhering to all the latest Public Health England guidance or wherever possible they are working from home.

"The measures now in place will help the sustainability of the business in the short term in order to protect our long term future and be best placed to recover from this crisis in due course with the return of airline operations."

In an earlier announcement in March, the airport confirmed that due to the impact of the pandemic on the aviation industry, redundancies, temporary lay-offs, salary reductions and reduced working weeks were being rolled.

The airport confirmed that the sweeping job changes would also apply to senior management.

Why hasn't the UK closed its borders?

Many countries around the world have closed their borders to all flights from other nations in a bid to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Despite the current restrictions in the UK which have brought the majority of flights to a standstill, the UK borders remain open.

According to Health Secretary Matt Hancock, this decision was taken because the UK is "following the science".

Hancock was asked about travel during the coronavirus daily press conference on Friday, April 10.

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He said: "We follow the science in terms of international travel all along and we saw right at the start of this pandemic that the two countries who brought in the draconian travel restrictions – the US and Italy – both of them have now got serious problems themselves."

"So I think that the science which we followed on international travel has been borne out by events."