Springing Forward: Regional Airports Catalyse Community Growth and Connectivity

As RCA’s airports unveil significant expansions and partnerships, their pivotal role in driving local economic development and enhancing travel options for regional communities comes into sharper focus. Andrew Bell, CEO of Regional & City Airports, delves into the latest developments …

As we step into the vibrant season of spring, the spirit of travel and community engagement was palpable at RCA this week, with BBC Radio Norfolk's breakfast show broadcasting live from Norwich Airport on Monday as it captured the excitement of spring holidaymakers and spotlighted the airport's crucial role in local life. 

This event was more than just a broadcast; it was a celebration of the ties that bind us, a reflection of the airport's integral place in our regional communities.

This spring season is emblematic of growth and renewal, themes that resonate deeply within our operations at Regional & City Airports, with a slew of recent announcements not only documenting regional aviation’s continued bounceback, but also underscoring the importance of our airports to their communities - reflecting growth, new partnerships, and an enriching array of travel options for regional travellers.

Our long-standing and highly valued partnership with TUI, with whom we collaborate on a range of significant projects, again demonstrated its value with the announcement that the leading global travel and leisure operation is set to operate an additional aircraft from Exeter Airport in Summer 2025, offering 80,000 additional seats, is a response to the growing demand from Devon and Cornwall. This expansion not only provides more travel choices but also reaffirms the airport as a key economic engine for regional development.

Meanwhile, Norwich Airport celebrated another major event with Ryanair commencing operations, marking the airport's 22nd UK base. This expansion introduces three new routes and is expected to bring 60,000 passengers in Summer 2024, alongside creating more than 60 local jobs. Such developments not only enhance travel options but also signify the economic vitality airports bring to their regions.

Similarly, Jet2.com and Jet2holidays' decision to make Bournemouth Airport their 12th UK base is a significant milestone. With 16 new sunny destinations and the creation of over 100 jobs, this development is set to boost the local economy and cater to the travel aspirations of the South of England. The enthusiasm and support from the community have been overwhelming, highlighting the deep connection between airports and the regions they serve.

Finally, Loganair marking its 150,000th customer at Exeter Airport is a moment of pride. Enhancing routes to Edinburgh with new, larger aircraft, and offering five weekly non-stop jet services to Newcastle, Loganair's growth is a clear indication of our commitment to connecting people and fostering regional growth.

These stories are not just milestones; they are a reflection of our dedication to serving our communities, ensuring accessibility, and promoting sustainable growth. Regional airports are more than just points of departure; they are gateways to possibilities, engines of economic growth, and pillars of community engagement.

We are not just connecting destinations; we are bringing communities closer, one flight at a time.


Regional & City Airports
Exeter Airport

T: 01737 823690
E: info@rca.aero

Public Relations

Iain S Bruce

Judy Groves