Victory in Liverpool

Tuesday 8th May 1945 marked Victory in Liverpool and all over Europe as the war-weary began to rejoice and Hitler’s war was no more. With it came the end of six years of misery, suffering, courage and endurance and the people of Liverpool, who had played a vital role in the Second World War, celebrated in the streets!

During the Second World War, Liverpool John Lennon Airport was taken over by the Royal Air Force and known as RAF Speke. Rootes built many bombers in a “shadow factory” here, including Bristol Blenheims and 1,070 Handley Page Halifaxes. Lockheed Aircraft Corporation assembled many types, including Hudsons and Mustangs, that had been shipped from the United States to Liverpool Docks. The airport was also home to the Merchant Ship Fighter Unit.

On 8 October 1940 (one day before John Lennon’s birth), Speke was witness to what is thought to be the fastest air-to-air combat “kill” in the Battle of Britain and possibly of all time. Flight Lieutenant Denys Gillam took off in his Hawker Hurricane from Speke to be confronted by a Junkers 88 passing across him. He shot the Junkers down while his undercarriage was still retracting, and, along with Alois Vašátko and Josef Stehlík, all of 312 Squadron, was credited with the kill. The moment has been caught in a painting below by Robert Taylor called “Fastest Victory”.

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Liverpool’s importance to the allied war effort was clear to Hitler, who ordered his Luftwaffe to ‘destroy’ the port.  During the war, Liverpool was subjected to more bombing raids (68) than any British city outside London, the worst being the terrible 8-night ‘May Blitz’ of 1941.  Between 1940 and 1942, nearly 4,000 Merseysiders were killed and 4,000 seriously injured in these raids, which did immense damage to the port and city.  But despite this devastation, the work of the port continued.  As well as food and war supplies, from 1942 thousands of American and Canadian troops were transported to Britain via Liverpool in readiness for the Allied landings in Normandy, which led to the German defeat in Western Europe.

To commemorate the 70th anniversary of VE Day events will be taking place across Liverpool, the day will begin on Tuesday morning with the city’s Lord Mayor Cllr Erica Kemp attending a service of Thanksgiving at Liverpool Parish Church, Our Lady and St Nicholas.  The bells at Liverpool’s municipal buildings in Dale Street will also be rung for an hour, starting at 11am.

At 3pm, there will be a two minutes’ silence at Exchange Flags to coincide with a national silence and on Tuesday evening the Lord Mayor will host a beacon lighting celebration on the Town Hall back balcony at which the public are invited to watch from Exchange Flags. The short ceremony will begin at 9.24pm in order to ensure the beacon will be lit at the exact time as more than 100 other beacons across the UK. Click here for more details.

Thank you to all those who took part in the war effort from Liverpool John Lennon Airport, and in memory of all those who lost their Lives.

Victory in Liverpool

Tuesday 8th May 1945 marked Victory in Liverpool and all over Europe as the war-weary began to rejoice and Hitler’s war was no more. With it came the end of six years of misery, suffering, courage and endurance and the people of Liverpool, who had played a vital role in the Second World War, celebrated in the streets!

During the Second World War, Liverpool John Lennon Airport was taken over by the Royal Air Force and known as RAF Speke. Rootes built many bombers in a “shadow factory” here, including Bristol Blenheims and 1,070 Handley Page Halifaxes. Lockheed Aircraft Corporation assembled many types, including Hudsons and Mustangs, that had been shipped from the United States to Liverpool Docks. The airport was also home to the Merchant Ship Fighter Unit.

On 8 October 1940 (one day before John Lennon’s birth), Speke was witness to what is thought to be the fastest air-to-air combat “kill” in the Battle of Britain and possibly of all time. Flight Lieutenant Denys Gillam took off in his Hawker Hurricane from Speke to be confronted by a Junkers 88 passing across him. He shot the Junkers down while his undercarriage was still retracting, and, along with Alois Vašátko and Josef Stehlík, all of 312 Squadron, was credited with the kill. The moment has been caught in a painting below by Robert Taylor called “Fastest Victory”.

1234

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liverpool’s importance to the allied war effort was clear to Hitler, who ordered his Luftwaffe to ‘destroy’ the port.  During the war, Liverpool was subjected to more bombing raids (68) than any British city outside London, the worst being the terrible 8-night ‘May Blitz’ of 1941.  Between 1940 and 1942, nearly 4,000 Merseysiders were killed and 4,000 seriously injured in these raids, which did immense damage to the port and city.  But despite this devastation, the work of the port continued.  As well as food and war supplies, from 1942 thousands of American and Canadian troops were transported to Britain via Liverpool in readiness for the Allied landings in Normandy, which led to the German defeat in Western Europe.

To commemorate the 70th anniversary of VE Day events will be taking place across Liverpool, the day will begin on Tuesday morning with the city’s Lord Mayor Cllr Erica Kemp attending a service of Thanksgiving at Liverpool Parish Church, Our Lady and St Nicholas.  The bells at Liverpool’s municipal buildings in Dale Street will also be rung for an hour, starting at 11am.

At 3pm, there will be a two minutes’ silence at Exchange Flags to coincide with a national silence and on Tuesday evening the Lord Mayor will host a beacon lighting celebration on the Town Hall back balcony at which the public are invited to watch from Exchange Flags. The short ceremony will begin at 9.24pm in order to ensure the beacon will be lit at the exact time as more than 100 other beacons across the UK. Click here for more details.

Thank you to all those who took part in the war effort from Liverpool John Lennon Airport, and in memory of all those who lost their Lives.

Liverpool Airport records April passenger growth of 5.37%

Liverpool John Lennon Airport continued its strong 2015 performance with a third consecutive month of passenger growth. Following 8% growth in March, April saw over 370,000 passengers travelling through Liverpool, based on a capacity increase of 4.8%.

 

New routes were inaugurated to Riga with Wizz Air, Zante by easyJet and Bacau operated by Blue Air. Wizz Air also increased its services to Warsaw, whilst Flybe increased its Belfast City services to 24 weekly, up from 17 weekly in March.

 

For the calender year to date, growth versus prior year is 4.20% with May set to see new services operated to Prague with Czech Airlines and Newmarket Holiday service to Verona. This follows news that Thomson Holidays will return to Liverpool with new service to Palma during Summer 2016.

£1m departure lounge improvement works near completion at LJLA

Development work aimed at improving the customer experience is nearing completion at Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA), following an opening up of parts of the Departure Lounge and the creation of a number of new and expanded retail units.

 Almost £1m has been spent over the past few months in a joint investment between the Airport and its retail partners, with this latest phase of works due for completion shortly, ahead of this year’s peak Summer season.

Works included the construction of a new, larger WHSmith retail unit on the lower Departure Lounge area to replace the previous unit, enabling the existing Kissing Gate Bar and Eatery area to be expanded.

These works have also opened up more views within the Departure Lounge over the apron, runway and to the Mersey estuary. Further work is to be completed shortly with replacement flooring and seating.

The Kissing Gate Bar and Eatery has been an extremely successful addition to the mix of food and beverage amenities at the Airport since its launch 2 years ago. This further development includes a new revised look and feel, with a reorganisation of the seating arrangements and the introduction of popular booth seating with diners overlooking the airfield. A new Summer menu has also been introduced, which passengers can view in advance via the Airport website.

Also on the lower Departure Lounge a new brand will be coming to the Airport with the arrival of a Joes Coffee House unit. Due for completion later this week, experienced baristas will be on hand to make a range of fresh coffees, fresh fruit juice, smoothie’s or one of their freshly made sandwiches, salads, jackets or soups.

On the upper Departure Lounge, work to extend the popular Frankie & Benny’s restaurant has been completed to provide additional seating and an updated entrance to cater for the growing numbers of customers choosing to have a meal served at their table, before their flight departs.

Finally, in response to requests from a significant number of passengers, an outdoor smoking area has now been provided within the departure lounge area, with weather protection and a wall heater.

Lucy O’Shaughnessy, the Airport’s Commercial Director commented, “These latest improvements and additions to the lounge will help to make the customer experience even better. In particular, the opening up of the departure lounge to enable more views out across the apron and beyond will really enhance the relaxed, hassle free ambience that we are already known for.”

The expanded Kissing Gate Bar and Eatery with views across the airfield:

Kissing Gate 1

The expanded Kissing Gate Bar and Eatery with its additional booth seating:

Kissing Gate 2

The expanded Kissing Gate Bar and Eatery in the heart of the Departure Lounge

Kissing Gate 3

Artist’s impression of the new Joes Coffee House unit:

Joes Coffee House

 

Wizz Air flights to Riga link one former Capital of Culture with another

Wizz Air, the largest low fare – low cost airline in Central and Eastern Europe commenced flights from Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) to Riga, the capital city of Latvia last Friday evening (24th April).

Celebrations with passengers and airline staff took place ahead of the first departure, with airport staff presenting Wizz Air cabin crew with a special celebratory cake in the shape of a Wizz Air aircraft.

The new flights between Liverpool and Riga now operate twice weekly on Mondays and Fridays and this new destination becomes Wizz Air’s third route to be served from Liverpool.

Wizz Air commenced operations from LJLA in late 2004 operating flights to the Polish capital of Warsaw and the Baltic coastal city of Gdansk, also in Poland and has recently increased its capacity on both these routes with a third weekly flight to each.

With a rich cultural and historical heritage, Riga is already proving popular as a value for money, city break destination for travellers who are on the lookout for new locations to explore. Like Liverpool in 2008, Riga was the 2014 European Capital of Culture and the new service is ideal for passengers looking to get away for a weekend break with the convenience of flying direct from Liverpool.

Mark Povall, Director of Air Service Development at LJLA said: “Riga is a great destination for both business and leisure passengers. The combination of Wizz Air’s low fares and a value for money, attractive destination such as Riga, should prove popular with the region’s passengers.”

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(L to R) Wizz Air Captain Gerradi Mamentovych and First Officer Oscar Santorum with LJLA’s celebratory cake.

 

 

5 Of The Greatest European Golf Courses You Can Fly To From Liverpool Airport

 

The European golf tour is in full swing. Instead of just watching the world’s best golfers battle it out on the green, why not join them yourself and play 18 holes on some of Europe’s most beautiful golf courses!

Here at Liverpool airport, we help golfers live out their own dreams of golf greatness by offering a huge amount of flights to some of the world’s greatest golfing destinations – here are our top 5 must see golf courses that you can fly to from Liverpool John Lennon Airport.

Take a look at our infographic.

 

Liverpool Golf destinations infographic Proxima

The Royal County Down Golf Club, Newcastle, N. Ireland. Par 71. Length 7,204 yards.

Boasting two 18 hole courses, the Championship Course and the Annesley Links, County Down is frequented by the best of the best, especially due to the fact the fourth and ninth holes are featured in the book The 500 World’s Greatest Golf Holes.

The course will host The Irish Open on the European Tour which is scheduled for late May in 2015, returning to Royal County Down after 76 years.  In 2005 the Championship Course was ranked as the fourth best course in the world outside the United States by Golf Digest, and in 2007 it was ranked first.

Click here to book your flight to Northern Ireland.

Real Club de Golf El Prat, Barcelona. Par 72, Length 7,000 yds.

The Real Club de Golf El Prat was established in 1954, playing host to the Spanish open in 1998. After the city extended its airport in 1990 Greg Norman’s design team was called in to breathe new life into the course. The result was two 18 hole courses and a practice course with 9 holes.

The Open de España will again be hosted in May 2015 amidst a backdrop of beautiful greenery and breathtaking mountains. You don’t have to be a professional to walk on and play a few rounds yourself, just book early!

Click here to book your flight to Barcelona.

Golf Club Crans-sur-Sierre, Switzerland. Par 72. Length 6,935 yds.

Widely regarded as one of the most breathtaking venues in the world – the Golf Club Crans-sur-Sierre, in Switzerland overlooks the Valais Alps. July 2015 will see the course play host to the Omega European Masters.

Since 1972 the Crans-sur-Sierre has staged a European Tour event each and every year – that’s 40+ tournaments! Although it’s covered in snow for half of the year, the summer playing conditions are near perfect. Bring your camera!

Click here to book your flight to Geneva, Switzerland.

Le Golf National, Paris, France Par 71. Length 7,300 yds.

The world famous L’Albatros course is an 18 hole golf course located in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Paris, France. L’Albatros has hosted the Open de France (French Open) every year (expect two) since 1991, and is now the official venue for the 2018 Ryder Cup. The course itself can accommodate 80,000 fans. A must see course especially when the sun is shining.

Click here to book your flight to Paris.

Albatross Golf Resort, Prague, Czech Republic Par 72. Length 7,466 yds.

Voted the Golf Resort of the Year in 2011 and 2012, the Albatross Golf Resort in Prague, is also the No.1 Czech Republic in the Golf Digest USA official golf course rankings. With accolades like these it’s easy to see why the venue has been chosen to host the D+D Real Czech Masters in August 27-30, 2015. Stunning views and an 18 hole championship golf course of the highest standards – the Albatross (not to be confused with L’Albatros) is Prague’s premier golf destination.

Click here to book your flight to Prague.

Liverpool John Lennon Airport is the ideal starting point for a Golfing break. You can get to all these great courses and many, many more flying direct from Liverpool. The city itself boasts a large number of stunning courses, especially the Royal Liverpool Golf Club which has held host to The Open, so if you’re travelling from Europe to the UK, why not tee off here? We have many flights leaving on a daily basis to over 60 destinations in Europe, so contact us today at liverpoolairport.com and book your dream golfing trip today.

The Majestic Three Queens in our Magnificent City!

This summer, join the celebrations in our Magnificent City…

Summer 2015 will see Liverpool’s famous waterfront host a seven week programme of events under the title “One Magnificent City” which will see visits by Cunard Cruise ships, the International Mersey River Festival and the re-enactment of the first transatlantic sailing from Liverpool – 175 years on.

May 2015 will welcome the Three Cunard Queens; Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria who will meet in the River Mersey for the first time in an event that will make maritime history. The three ships will only be together for a short time on Monday 25th, but activities will take place across the weekend, from Saturday 24th until Tuesday 26th May.

Thousands of people are expected to flock to both sides of the Mersey to share in the unique and majestic Three Queens event, meaning it will be an extremely busy few days for transport. This is something to consider if you’re planning on seeing the Three Queens or have to get to and from work during the event.

An online transport information hub at www.merseytravel.gov.uk offers people options and advice, whether they are travelling from near or far, so they can make informed choices about how to get there and home.

If you need further help in planning your journey, call Traveline on 0151 236 7676. Also follow us on Twitter, @Merseytravel #3queenstravel

 

easyJet commence Greek summer sunshine flights to Zakynthos from LJLA

easyJet, the UK’s largest airline today celebrated the launch of its new route to the Greek island of Zakynthos from Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA).

 This latest addition to easyJet’s Summer 2015 line up of destinations departs from Liverpool each Thursday lunchtime throughout the Summer and the airline is expected to fly 6,000 passengers between the destinations annually.

 easyJet now has 30 destinations on sale from Liverpool having carried over one million passengers from here last year and this new route compliments the airline’s mix of City and holiday destinations already operating from Liverpool.

 Zakynthos is the most southerly of the Ionian Islands and one of the most popular Greek islands for holidaymakers.

 Mark Povall, Director of Air Service Development for Liverpool John Lennon Airport commented, “Zakynthos is a great summer holiday destination and this new service now gives passengers from across the region the added convenience of being able to fly direct from their local airport.

 “This new service will see increased numbers of passengers travelling from Liverpool in 2015 and a further growth in easyJet operations here.”

 Ali Gayward, easyJet’s UK Commercial Manager said, “We’re delighted to be adding Zakynthos to easyJet’s range of destinations from Liverpool. It’s really exciting to be here to see our first flight depart today and highlights our commitment to providing affordable routes to summer destinations from Liverpool but will also benefit inbound tourism to the city.

 “Our Greek routes are proving extremely popular for those who wish to get some easy and affordable summer sun, and we’re sure that our new route and our 30th destination from Liverpool will be a success.”

 Photo caption:

Captain Dave Eadon, with the Greek flag, ahead of the easyJet inaugural departure to Zante.

 Zakynthos 1.JPG

 (L to R) LJLA’s Operations Director Colin Swaine, with easyJet Cabin Manager Simon Wallace,  Flight Attendant Helen Johnson and Ali Gayward cutting the ribbon on easyJet’s first flight to Zante from Liverpool.

Zakynthos 2.JPG

Joe’s Coffee House lands in Liverpool

Attention coffee lovers, there’s a new place in town. We are proud to announce the arrival of Joe’s Coffee House on the 30th April! For those of you who haven’t experienced Joe’s before, it’s a coffee house specialising in warm welcomes and hot coffee – perfect for our ever-growing departure lounge.

Months of planning have gone into the launch and everyone is pretty excited; when one of our travellers takes the first sip of Joe’s barista-made coffee and sits back in one of Joe’s comfortable chairs, it will have been worth the wait.190314_Joes_052

The beauty of Joe’s Coffee House is, well it’s not just ALL about the coffee – there’s more to it than that. A short period of relaxation before your flight can now be accompanied by freshly-baked pastries, delicious sandwiches, warming soups, soothing stews and deep-filled jacket potatoes.

Not a coffee-lover? Not a problem – Joe’s has got you covered here too – smoothies and juices are very much a part of the coffee house game and if you’ve got a sweet tooth, it’s packed with treats. After something a bit stronger? Joe’s has a wide range of beers, wines or even a chilled martini to get you in the holiday mood.

It’s often easy to forget that your holiday very much starts when you get to the airport – it’s the beginning of the journey and it’s there to be enjoyed. Now a Joe’s Coffee House has finally come to Liverpool, you have yet another reason to arrive in good time, relax and enjoy the moment. You’re guaranteed a warm welcome and an array of beaming smiles at Joe’s, but it’s the coffee that will keep you coming back.

Thomson and First Choice to introduce new Palma, Majorca route for summer 2016

Thomson and First Choice are pleased to announce that in summer 2016 they will introduce a brand new Thomson Airways route to Palma, Majorca from Liverpool John Lennon Airport offering Thomson Cruises holidays to customers from the North West.

The move to introduce the route is part of the UK’s leading holiday company’s strategy to ensure customers across the UK can fly from their local airport and stay at the best hotels in some of the most exciting destinations. The new route will go on sale on the 23rd April 2015.

Customers travelling from Liverpool during summer 2016 will be able to join the Thomson Majesty sailing from Palma as it explores the Western Mediterranean, with the introduction of evening stays in Ibiza and Barcelona on the Catalan Promise itinerary.

Thomson Cruises will also be offering customers the chance to add a stay in Majorca for those looking for a cruise and stay experience. A range of alternative holidays will also be available from Liverpool from Thomson and First Choice.

Flights will depart from Liverpool on Tuesdays commencing on 3rd May 2016, operating for 26 weeks throughout the summer 2016 season, on board a Thomson Airways 189 seat Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

Karen Switzer, Director of Aviation Planning for Thomson and First Choice, said of the move: “Adding a flight to Majorca from Liverpool demonstrates our commitment to the airport and the local area. It’s great that we can give local customers the chance to take advantage of fabulous new itineraries on board the Thomson Majesty sailing from Palma next summer and allowing them to experience the cruise and stay programme. We know the new route will be well received and we’re excited to extend our cruise offering by making it easily accessible for those living in the North West.

“Expanding access to our portfolio of destinations and hotels is a key part of our overall strategy and we hope that this move will enhance the holiday experience for our customers.”

Andrew Cornish, CEO of Liverpool John Lennon Airport commented, “This is yet another significant announcement for the Airport as we re-establish a full season holiday charter product from Liverpool for the first time in 7 years.

There is huge demand for leisure holidays from our core catchment area. Today’s news means that the region’s passengers will now be able to start their Thomson or First Choice holiday with the added convenience of flying from their local airport.”

Upgrade to all inclusive for free for summer 2016

Early bookers for the summer 2016 season will benefit from a free all inclusive upgrade on selected sailings for all the Thomson Cruises ships, worth £199 per person per week.