Virgin Altantic 747

Virgin Atlantic reveals jumbo October schedule from Glasgow Airport

Virgin Atlantic has announced additional capacity on its popular Florida flights from Glasgow Airport this October.

Almost 2,000 extra seats will be made available as a result of the airline’s decision to deploy a Boeing 747 aircraft on its Orlando route during the month.

This will allow Virgin Atlantic to meet the high demand associated with the school holiday week, which is traditionally one of Glasgow Airport’s busiest periods of the year.

The 455 seat jumbo jet will replace a 314 seat Airbus A330 for seven return flights in October, with Scots keen to visit the Sunshine State benefitting from a total of 1,974 additional seats.

Virgin Altantic 747

The Boeing aircraft also features the airline’s award winning Upper Class in addition to the Premium Economy and Economy products available on the Airbus, which is normally deployed by Virgin Atlantic on the Florida route outwith the peak months of June and July.

Edmond Rose, Virgin Atlantic’s director of commercial and revenue planning, commented: “October is proving to be an exceptionally busy month for Scottish holidaymakers travelling out to Florida. To meet this increased demand Virgin Atlantic has taken the decision to bring one of its Boeing 747 aircraft onto the route, adding a significant number of seats.

“We are working really closely with Glasgow Airport and hope to continue to increase capacity out of Glasgow.”

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: “Since launching in 2007 the Florida flights have been a huge success, carrying nearly 40,000 passengers in 2012, and we are very proud to have such a strong brand as Virgin Atlantic here at Glasgow Airport.

“Florida is a popular destination among Scottish holidaymakers and the decision to increase capacity on this route through the use of a larger aircraft is a clear demonstration of Virgin Atlantic’s commitment to the Glasgow market. We will be working closely with the airline to ensure capacity continues to rise.”

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Glasgow Airport reports passenger growth for March 2013


Passenger growth at Glasgow Airport has continued with over 510,000 people travelling through the airport in March 2013, representing an increase of 0.6% compared to the same period last year.

The launch of Wizz Air’s flights to Warsaw and Gdansk contributed to a rise in demand for international travel, as did the decision by Icelandair to introduce a fourth weekly service to Reykjavik. The airport was also boosted by Celtic’s Champions League fixture against Juventus which resulted in additional international traffic.

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport said: “The addition of new routes, such as Wizz Air’s services to Poland, has been key to our recent success in growing passenger numbers and we will continue to work towards providing customers with greater choice.

“We enjoyed a busy Easter get-away and the launch of Lufthansa Regional’s direct flight to Dusseldorf, which also marked the return of the Star Alliance network to Glasgow, was particularly pleasing. Plans for our £17 million investment programme which will see key parts of the terminal building undergo a major makeover, are well underway and we are now looking forward to a busy summer season.”


Lufthansa’s Glasgow to Düsseldorf service takes off with trade mission 

Lufthansa Regional’s inaugural Glasgow to Düsseldorf service took to the skies today (Monday 8 April) with representatives from the local business community who aim to promote greater ties between the two cities.

A cross section of businesses joined the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, the Scottish Chambers of Commerce, Scottish Development International (SDI) and Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (GCMB) on the Lufthansa Regional flight and will attend a series of engagements in Düsseldorf, which is located in the heart of the prosperous Rhine-Ruhr region.

Germany represents the largest international market for Glasgow with more than 71,000 trips made each year by German visitors who generate more than £19 million for the local economy. The new service will provide the perfect opportunity to strengthen links between Glasgow and Düsseldorf, both of which are economic powerhouses in their own right.

Lufthansa Regional will initially operate six flights per week, increasing to a daily service in June and it is the first time Glasgow Airport will have served Düsseldorf in 20 years. The launch of the route also marks the return of the extensive Lufthansa network to Glasgow.

Stuart Patrick, chief executive of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said: “Düsseldorf is at the centre of the Ruhr Valley, where so much of Germany’s engineering industry is based, and Germany is an important market for Glasgow. We’re pleased to be taking a delegation of business people from the city there to explore trading opportunities. This Lufthansa service is the latest new route won by the Glasgow Airport management team, and we should all recognise their remarkable success, especially in these tough times.”

Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, said: “Lufthansa’s new route between Düsseldorf and Glasgow is a major boost for the city and the wider West of Scotland economy. It provides a direct, daily flight to one of Europe’s wealthiest regions and there will undoubtedly be strong demand for this service from within the business community. However, it also has huge potential to deliver significant in-bound leisure tourism from Germany, which is our largest international market.

“Additionally, increased access is a key driver in attracting more delegates to the conferences that meet in Glasgow and this vastly improves the city’s global competiveness by providing passengers with greater worldwide connectivity through the Lufthansa network.

“Landing this new service has been the result of strong partnership working between Glasgow International Airport, Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, the German Consulate in Glasgow, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce and VisitScotland. Even in these tough times, Glasgow is constantly striving to improve its air links and we are looking forward to working with Lufthansa to ensure the success of this route.”

Derek Mackay MSP for Renfrewshire North and West, said: “The introduction of Lufthansa Regional’s Düsseldorf service is fantastic news for Glasgow Airport and for everyone in the West of Scotland. With Glasgow Airport managing to add this service to their route network it will hopefully attract other companies to investigate the possibility of bringing their business to Renfrewshire.

“Glasgow Airport has recently proven its ambition to provide the best flights and services for its passengers, with the announcement last year of its second daily route to Dubai and also the more recent announcement of the £10 million investment to refurbish the airport in time for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

“With Düsseldorf being a massive economic player amongst the rest of the major cities around the world, this is great news for the business community within Renfrewshire North and West.  Furthermore, if you add the fact that Scotland was recently voted as the top tourist destination this year in a CNN poll and the addition of this service it will no doubt increase tourism from Germany to Renfrewshire and around Scotland.”

Lufthansa is a founding member of the Star Alliance network which was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer worldwide reach, recognition and seamless service to the international traveller. Overall, the Star Alliance network offers more than 21,900 daily flights to 1,329 airports in 194 countries.


Lufthansa Regional’s direct flights to Düsseldorf are on sale at

Bringing It All Home for Gerry and the songmakers

Bringing It All Home for Gerry and the songmakers

Paisley is gearing up to honour one of its favourite sons with a series of songwriting events in the town this May.

Bring It All Home (2 – 4 May) is a celebration of song inspired by the legacy of Gerry Rafferty.  The Paisley-born singer-songwriter, who died in 2011, is known for his iconic hits ‘Baker Street’, ‘Right Down the Line’, and ‘Stuck In The Middle With You’.

Bring It All Home will feature performances from internationally-renowned artists such as Love and Money’s James Grant as well as a celebration of Paisley songwriters.

James Grant will open the event in Paisley Abbey on 2 May, where he will welcome friends Chris Thompson(Friends Again and The Bathers), Graham Skinner (Hipsway), Monica Queen (Belle and Sebastian collaboratrix), Fraser Spiers and bandmate and producer Paul McGeehan.

Home-grown songwriting talent will feature with Carol Laula and Yvonne Lyon performing in the Wynd Centre on 3 May and Michael Cassidy, local artist and winner of a council-sponsored songwriting prize in 2012, opening the Abbey concert.

In this first year of a new annual event, budding songwriters can join a free ‘masterclass’ in the town in a special session in Paisley Museum with James Grant.

Paisley’s Songwriting Guild will also perform free in The Bungalow Bar on Thursday 2 May and in Hamishes Hoose (just after the masterclass in the Museum) on Saturday 4 May.

Martha Rafferty, Gerry’s daughter, said: “Gerry’s talent is recognised as much today as it ever was and he would have hoped to inspire people from Paisley to pick up a guitar and try writing a tune or two themselves, I’m sure.”

“He was passionate about his music and he was passionate about his hometown – any combination of the two is a great way to remember him.”

Renfrewshire Council is backing the event with Council Leader Mark Macmillan describing it as “another step in promoting Paisley as an exciting cultural venue”.

Councillor Macmillan said: “The Paisley music scene has always been incredibly vibrant and we’re doing all we can at Renfrewshire Council to encourage musicians and music fans to the town.

“We’ve been blessed to have talents like Gerry Rafferty over the years and it’s great to have this opportunity to celebrate what he and his music brought to Paisley.

“This is a huge year for music in the town.  In October, Paisley will take centre-stage as the showcase for traditional and contemporary Scottish culture when we see the return of The Spree festival and we play host to the Royal National Mòd.

“All of these events attract people into the town and that’s what we need as we work to regenerate Paisley after some tough years.”

Tickets for the shows on 2-3 May can be bought from on 08444 155 221 or from the food counter of Marks & Spencer, High Street, Paisley.

More information about the festival is available online at

Pupils’ tourism careers get off the ground thanks to Glasgow Airport

Scotland’s next generation is learning about career opportunities in one of the country’s largest and most important industry sectors thanks to Glasgow Airport.

A project which introduces young people to the opportunities available in the hospitality and tourism sectors is being paid for with £40,000 from the Glasgow Airport FlightPath Fund.

The airport is also playing an active role in the delivery of the project and recently hosted an interactive session with pupils from Drumchapel High School, to demonstrate the wide range of jobs and career progression opportunities available at the airport.

The aim of the Skills for Sustainable Tourism project, which was devised by the charity Scottish Business in the Community (SBC), is to encourage these young people to move into education, training or employment in the tourism and hospitality sectors when they leave school.

With Glasgow Airport employing only around a tenth of the 4,500 workforce based on the airport campus, business partners World Duty Free also took part to give the pupils a retail perspective.

glasgow airport

Craig Martin, Glasgow Airport’s head of human resources, took part in the recent session with the children. He said: “This programme recognises the importance of tourism and hospitality in Scotland, and comes at exactly the right time with the Commonwealth Games, Ryder Cup and Homecoming all taking place in 2014.

“These interactive sessions are a great way to inform these young people about the huge range of jobs and career progression opportunities that exist at Glasgow Airport and a range of other organisations. Hopefully some of the visitors will return to take up employment here in the future!”

As the goal is to enable the Drumchapel youngsters to learn about every aspect of the tourism and hospitality industries, and increase their awareness and opportunities, the airport visit is just one of several facilitated by SBC including Glasgow 2014, Holiday Inn, Intercontinental Hotels and Rabbie’s Tours.

Bob Christie, SBC’s regional manager for Glasgow, said: “It is great news that a prominent business like Glasgow Airport, which supports thousands of jobs in tourism and hospitality both directly and indirectly, has chosen to fund this project in its entirety.

“During an economic downturn there is a greater risk that young people will leave school without employment, education or training, however we believe there are a significant number of opportunities available in tourism and hospitality which provide a route to both work and skills development.

“By funding and participating in this programme, Glasgow Airport has shown it is willing to invest in the future of the young people in its community and the future of Scotland’s tourism industry.”

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caroline watson

Exhibition of drawing and mixed media on paper

Caroline Watson, a Paisley artist, presents an exhibition of drawing and mixed media on paper. Exhibited last year at the beautiful Paisley Abbey, this series of work is based on floral images and the tradition of giving flowers as gifts to convey love, sorrow, congratulations, thanks… and our need to share at some level in the experience of another. Preview night is Thursday 21st March from 6-8 p.m. so please come along and meet the artist.  

Caroline will also lead a one-day workshop on mixed media Saturday 13th April. To attend the preview or for information about the workshop, please contact or call 0141 353 4770.  (To contact the artist:

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