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Royal Scottish National Orchestra performance kicks off Airport’s ‘Best of Scotland’ celebration

 

Passengers at Glasgow Airport were today (Wednesday 31 July) treated to a first-class performance with a Caledonian twist from the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

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RSNO Chorus Director Gregory Batsleer led over 50 orchestral musicians for two performances in the main terminal this morning (9.30am and 10.30am) to mark the start of Glasgow Airport’s ‘Best of Scotland’ celebration.

The Best of Scotland festival provides passengers with the opportunity to celebrate and experience Scotland’s finest food, drink and culture, and will see the terminal and surrounding areas showcase some of the best tastes, sights and sounds of the country during the month of August.

As part of the celebrations, the RSNO performed a selection of the country’s most iconic pieces of music, including Flower of Scotland, Auld Lang Syne and Loch Lomond.

Adam Ashe, Number Eight for the airport’s commercial partner Glasgow Warriors, was also be in attendance and swapped the oval ball for the conductor’s baton to lead Scotland’s national orchestra.

Mark Johnston, Glasgow Airport’s Managing Director, said: “For many visitors the airport is their first and last impression of Scotland, and our Best of Scotland campaign is a great way to celebrate the quality of our country’s fare while also providing exciting and interesting entertainment for our passengers.

“The Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s annual performance is one of the highlights of the year for both the terminal team and of course our passengers. We’ve enjoyed a fantastic partnership with the RSNO over the years and once again these fantastic musicians put in a first-class performance in the terminal.

“It was also great to welcome Adam Ashe along for the performance and good to know that when he eventually retires from rugby he will be well-versed to tackle a career as a chorus conductor!”

Gregory Batsleer, RSNO Chorus Conductor, said: “It’s a complete joy to surprise passers-by with the thrilling sounds that come from a large professional orchestra, especially in one of Scotland’s busiest airports.

“It’s really important that we as musicians are able perform music outside of the concert hall and I’m excited that passengers arriving to Glasgow Airport from all over the world were welcomed with music from Scotland’s National Orchestra.”

Glasgow Airport exterior

A spokesperson for Glasgow Airport said: “Following further talks, Unite has agreed to suspend the planned industrial action for Friday 5 and Thursday 11 July. This is to allow Unite to conduct a consultative ballot with its members on our improved offer which we hope will result in a positive outcome. The ballot will be conducted between Thursday 4 and Tuesday 9 July.”

Glasgow Airport exterior

Planned strike action at Glasgow Airport tomorrow (Wednesday 3 July) between 8am and 12 noon has been suspended to allow for more talks to take place from today.

A Glasgow Airport spokesman said: “Unite has confirmed it has suspended the planned industrial action for Wednesday 3 July in order for further talks to take place.

“Industrial action is still planned for Friday 5 July between 9.30am and 1.30pm during which our robust, compliant and safe contingencies will be in place to ensure passengers continue to be unaffected by the actions of Unite.”

Glasgow Airport exterior

Details of Glasgow Airport’s offer on pay and pensions:

  • A pay increase of 3% for 2019 back dated to January and a guarantee of 3% for 2020 – this would represent four years in a row a 3% pay deal has been offered;

  • Guaranteed bonus payment of £600 paid immediately;

  • Compensation package of 30% of base plus shift pay for the remaining final salary pension (Defined Benefit scheme) members, with a guaranteed minimum payment of £7,000; and

  • Final salary pension members will move to one of the UK’s leading Defined Contribution (DC) pension schemes which features employer contributions of up to 16%.
Summer getaway

 More than 165,000 passengers expected over weekend

  • Over one million Scots to head for their holidays during school break

 

Glasgow Airport is preparing for its busiest weekend of the year so far as tens of thousands take to the skies for the summer holidays.

Summer getaway

More than 165,000 passengers are expected to travel through the airport this weekend as the school holidays get underway. Airport staff expect to welcome more than a million Scots holidaymakers during the school summer holidays.

The majority of travellers will be heading for popular sunshine hotspots such as Alicante, the Canary Islands, Crete, Florida, Mexico, Turkey, Portugal and the Balearics. Other popular city break destinations include Barcelona, Prague, Paris, Amsterdam, Rome, New York, Frankfurt and Venice.

Even more people will travel on Scotland’s busiest long-haul route – the Dubai double daily service – as a result of the additional capacity provided by the iconic A380 aircraft introduced earlier this year.

Additional staff will be on hand at peak times over the weekend to provide support and assurance for passengers as they prepare for check-in and security.

The airport will also be providing plenty of entertainment for young departing travellers to ensure their holidays get off to a fun start.  This will include a kids’ fitness zone in the departures area, NERF war games, Highland dancing, performances from a rock choir and activity bags.

Despite the proposed strike action planned by some Unite members on Friday 28th and Sunday 30th of June, it will be business as usual for passengers travelling through the terminal on both days.

Mark Johnston, Glasgow Airport Managing Director, said: “There’s always a great atmosphere in terminal, particularly as the school term has come to an end and thousands of families arrive at the airport ahead of their holidays.

“This weekend is sure to be one of our busiest ever and we’ll have plenty of activities to help keep the children occupied.

“Given that the airport will be busier than usual during what is our biggest weekend this year, we would encourage passengers to allow enough time for check-in and to ensure they are prepared for the security area and have their boarding passes ready.

 

“All liquids, gels and pastes carried in hand luggage should be 100ml or less and carried in a 20cm x 20cm clear plastic bag, which should be presented out-with their hand luggage at the security check point.

“Passengers should also organise their hand luggage appropriately before they go through our X-Ray machines, which means removing laptops and other large electrical equipment from their bags and placing them flat and unobstructed in the tray along with smaller items such as keys, coins, watched and phones.

“Small steps such as these really help to ensure our passengers pass through security as quickly and smoothly as possible so they can relax and enjoy the start of their holiday.

“Although some of our staff who are members of Unite have chosen our busiest period of the year to stage further industrial action, I wanted to take this opportunity to once again reassure our passengers that the strike days which have taken place to date have caused minor disruption, if any at all. Glasgow Airport remains open, fully operational and our number one priority is to ensure our passengers continue to get on their summer holidays without any disruption.”

 

Lightweight Manufacturing Centre autoclave vessel

The Lightweight Manufacturing Centre opening in Renfrewshire represents “a significant step in our ambitions to be the beating heart of modern Scottish manufacturing”.

That’s according to Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson who joined First Minister Nicola Sturgeon at the official centre opening today (Wednesday 26 June 2019).

Lightweight Manufacturing Centre autoclave vessel

The centre is the first phase of the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland (NMIS) which is being built in the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland (AMIDS).

Based in the Doosan Babcock facilities at Westway Park and run by the University of Strathclyde, the centre helps manufacturing companies to benefit from lightweighting technology.

Lightweighting is already adopted in the high-value automotive and aerospace industries, developing lighter components

that provide a range of benefits including improved speed, increased strength, reduced costs and greater sustainability.

“I’m delighted to see the Lightweight Manufacturing Centre officially open and I’m excited by the benefits it can offer to manufacturers big and small,” said Councillor Nicolson.

“Every business is looking for that competitive edge while also recognising the importance of reducing their impact on the environment and I look forward to seeing local businesses benefiting from its expertise over the coming years.”

In partnership with the Scottish Government and Scottish Enterprise, Renfrewshire Council is leading development of the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland.

Work starts this summer on the enabling infrastructure to transform a 52-hectare site next to Glasgow Airport into a hub for manufacturing innovation, home to NMIS and a £56million Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre.

Councillor Nicolson added: “There are already 9000 manufacturing jobs in Renfrewshire and it accounts for more than 20% of our economic output. There’s great potential to grow this even further and the Lightweight Centre opening is a significant step in our ambitions to be the beating heart of modern Scottish manufacturing.

Renfrewshire Chamber Chief Executive Bob Grant and Council Leader Iain Nicolson

“We have always been a place rich in creativity and innovation and look forward to supporting the development of these major investments, ensuring they bring jobs and opportunities to everyone in Renfrewshire.”

Find out more about the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland.

Gary Jamieson and Andy Russell Operations Manager of Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Company

[Case study] Lightweighting has heavyweight potential for all manufacturers

Michelle Ferguson is Director of Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Company, which is a division of Royal British Legion Industries and a Social Enterprise which supports armed forces veterans and others with disabilities. Here she outlines how they have benefited from working with the team at the Lightweight Manufacturing Centre.

William Murray of Scotland’s Bravest Manufacturing Company

“We took over the premises in Erskine Hospital Estate last year and have grown to a team of 17, with our main aim of helping people who face barriers to employment to learn new manufacturing skills, gain confidence and independence.

“We manufacture road and rail signs, specialist engineering cutting and prototypes. We became aware quite early in our manufacturing days that a number of these products had a real impact on the environment, causing thousands of tons to end up in landfill each year, so we wanted to consider a way to prevent this where possible and potentially re-manufacture them.

“As we didn’t have the technological know-how, we approached the University of Strathclyde’s Advanced Forming Research Centre who put us in touch with the team at the Lightweight Manufacturing Centre.

“I was surprised and delighted that they would give consideration to a Social Enterprise project like ours and they were so welcoming, involving our Operations Manager Andy Russell along with two of our veteran factory operatives Gary Jamieson and William Murray, throughout the full process.

“Everything about them was positive and their expertise has helped us to find a solution which we’re now exploring further. We see it as a game-changer which could have a hugely positive impact on the environment.

“We’re very proud to be based in Renfrewshire, where manufacturing is a real growth industry and embracing new technology and innovation. Many people may come to us initially because we’re a social enterprise, but they stay with us because of the quality products we manufacture.”

https://www.scotlandsbravest.org.uk/

Glasgow Airport Investment Area construction

Contractors and suppliers won’t want to miss out on a ‘meet the buyer’ event for Glasgow Airport Investment Area contracts

Wills Bros Civil Engineering Limited are holding the drop-in event from 3pm to 7pm on Wednesday 26 June at the Normandy Hotel in Renfrew.

Glasgow Airport Investment Area construction

The drop-in event includes a presentation at 4pm. To register your attendance and for more details, visit the Meet the Buyer event website.

The Motherwell-based company secured the £21million construction contract to deliver the enabling infrastructure underpinning the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland.

Now they are looking to hear from contractors and suppliers who carry out a wide range of works including groundworks and drainage, landscaping, fencing and street lighting.

Councillor John Shaw, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Finance, Resources and Customer Services Policy Board, said: “I would encourage all local suppliers and contractors to come along to this event and hear all about the available opportunities on offer and what steps they need to take to ensure they can bid to secure them.

“Meet the buyer events are just one of the benefits of the Glasgow Airport Investment Area project which, completed, will create a new home for advanced manufacturing and help attract thousands of new jobs to Renfrewshire.”

The Glasgow Airport Investment Area project is jointly funded by the UK and Scottish Governments through the £1.13billion Glasgow City Region City Deal and will see new roads, bridges, cycleways and footpaths being built connecting into a site next to Glasgow Airport.

Abbotsinch Road will be upgraded and realigned and a new bridge constructed spanning the White Cart from Wright Street to an approach road off Arran Avenue, offering access for cyclists, pedestrians and Wright Street businesses.

There’s also a new cycle and pedestrian bridge across the Black Cart and an off-road cycle link between Abbotsinch Road and the A8 Greenock Road.

Work starts this summer and is expected to be completed in 2020.

Supply chain events are part of 60 community benefits included in the contract, together with opportunities for apprenticeships and support for community projects.

Find out more about the Glasgow Airport Investment Area project.

scottish transport awards 1019

Glasgow Airport was named Airport of the Year at the Scottish Transport Awards – one of three accolades picked up by the transport hub last night.
The airport also scooped the Accessible Transport Award for its popular special assistance service, which last year ensured more than 121,000 who need additional support while travelling through the terminal enjoyed a safe and pleasant journey. Glasgow also became the biggest airport in Scotland to open its £144,000 state-of-the-art Changing Places facility.

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Glasgow Airport’s Chaplain Keith Banks, due to retire later this month, received a standing ovation when he was presented with the Lifetime Contribution as a Frontline Employee Award.

Managing Director of Glasgow Airport Mark Johnston said: “We are absolutely thrilled to win the Airport of the Year Award. I firmly believe that our ‘one-campus’ approach, which involves over 5000 hard-working people from more than 100 separate companies across Glasgow Airport, continues to be the driving force behind our unique customer experience. “We put our passengers at the heart of everything we do, so it’s fantastic that the hard work of everyone at Glasgow Airport has been recognised at the Scottish Transport Awards. “Despite this being a challenging period for the airport and the wider industry, we continue to strive to deliver for our passengers and Scotland.

scottish transport awards 1019

The arrival of the iconic A380 aircraft into regular service on the Dubai route earlier this year, which was a first for Scottish aviation, is a fantastic example of our ambition. “I was especially pleased to see our special assistance service recognised through the Accessible Transport Award. We welcome more people who require additional support each year than any other airport in Scotland and a huge amount of endeavour and investment goes into making sure every passenger enjoys a pleasant journey through the terminal. “Finally, I’d like to congratulate our retiring Chaplain Keith Banks for his Lifetime Contribution as a Frontline Employee Award. Keith has served his colleagues and the millions of people we welcome through our doors each year with dedication and distinction.

scottish transport awards 1019

He leaves later this month with our best wishes and upmost gratitude.”

Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson MSP welcomed 450 industry professionals to the event last night to celebrate the people and organisations that make a real difference to transport across Scotland. Hosted by broadcaster James Naughtie, the 17 th annual Scottish Transport Awards once again recognised excellence, innovation and progress across all areas of transport.

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A spokesperson for AGS Airports, which owns and managers Aberdeen International and Glasgow airports, said: “We are extremely disappointed that the trade unions have served notice of industrial action. We have been in talks since January and, despite attending Acas, there has been no willingness whatsoever on the part of the unions to engage in a constructive negotiation.

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“We made a significant improvement on our initial pay offer which was increased from 1.8% to 3% in line with their demands. This was rejected by the trade unions without further consulting their members. In regards to our final salary pension scheme, it is simply unaffordable with the cost to the company due to rise to 24.7% per employee. We tabled a generous compensation package for the remaining members which again was rejected by unions without further consulting their members.

“As always, we remain open to continuing dialogue, however, we will now put our robust contingency plans in place to ensure it will be business as usual at Aberdeen and Glasgow airports for our passengers and airlines on both Friday 7th and Monday 10th of June.”

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  • Zero tolerance Campus Watch programme has seen offences halve since 2017

 

Glasgow Airport’s disruptive passenger campaign was launched today (Friday 24 May) by the UK Aviation Minister Baroness Vere, ahead of the 2019 summer season.

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Meeting with the airport’s Managing Director and Police Scotland today, the Aviation Minister witnessed for herself the effectiveness of the Campus Watch scheme, which has seen the number of offences involving disruptive behaviour reduced by more than 50 per cent since 2017.

In partnership with Police Scotland, Campus Watch was introduced in 2013 to tackle disruptive behaviour at Glasgow Airport. From bar and restaurant employees to security crew and retailers, the scheme provides training, advice and support to staff who interact with passengers throughout the airport.

Airport staff will report individuals at risk of committing disruptive behaviour, such as those under the influence of alcohol, to the airport’s central control room. This information is shared with staff across the airport campus via a rapid text alert system and passengers can be given warnings about their behaviour, monitored by police and airport staff, or even refused alcohol at bars and restaurants. If their behaviour continues to cause concern, they could eventually be stopped from boarding their flight.

 

Aviation Minister Baroness Vere said:

 

“Unruly and disruptive behaviour can be extremely distressful for those on board, threaten the safety of aircraft and be hugely inconvenient for passengers if planes are forced to divert to offload perpetrators.

 

“It is only right that passengers and staff are protected from such behaviour and it was great to witness the dedication of hardworking staff committed to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of passengers.”

 

The simple and effective Campus Watch approach has been an industry leader since its introduction and in recent years a number of other UK airports have visited Glasgow to learn and adopt the key principles of the programme.

 

Although launched ahead of the peak summer season, Campus Watch operates throughout the year and features an extensive staff awareness programme, including a series of drop-in sessions and stakeholder forums, to ensure people employed across the airport who interact with passengers receive the appropriate support and training in order to work together to tackle disruptive behaviour.

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Glasgow Airport Managing Director Mark Johnston said:

 

“Instances of disruptive behaviour at Glasgow Airport remain extremely rare and I’m confident our Campus Watch programme has played a key role in ensuring the vast majority of our passengers travel through the airport safely, responsibly and without incident.

 

“Offences involving disruptive behaviour were halved last year at Glasgow Airport and we are seeing a further reduction this year to date, so Campus Watch is having a positive effective and our zero-tolerance approach is getting through to the tiny minority who fail to act in a responsible manner.

 

“For many of our passengers, the arrival at the airport signals the start of their holiday and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with this. We want to ensure our passengers continue to enjoy a pleasant, safe and disruption-free journey and Campus Watch is in place to ensure it’s a memorable one for the right reasons.”

 

Disruptive behaviour covers a broad range of offences and actions ranging from a verbal warning to arrest. As an example, if an incident is alcohol related the passenger involved will be warned about their behaviour by Police Scotland officers and refused service across all retail and catering outlets throughout the terminal. Gate staff will be also notified in advance and will assess the passenger and determine if they should be permitted to board the aircraft.

 

Other steps taken at Glasgow Airport as part of the Campus Watch initiative include:

 

  • Police Scotland patrols at the drop-off area ahead of potentially problematic flights
  • New Campus Watch awareness material displayed across the airport
  • Airlines make airport-based Police Scotland officers aware of group bookings
  • Police Scotland officers make themselves known to large groups arriving at the airport
  • Duty free staff will also remind passengers the alcohol they purchase is for export only and cannot be consumed in the airport or on board an aircraft
  • Regular Campus Watch drop-in sessions held for staff to learn more and share experiences
  • Regular Campus Watch steering group made up of airport partners

 

Glasgow Airport, its airline partners, caterers and retailers are signatories of the UK Aviation Industry Code of Practice on Disruptive Passengers launched in 2017. Like Campus Watch, the code has been designed to create a common, consistent approach to preventing and minimising disruptive behaviour.

 

In addition to this, the airport is also committed to continuing its support of the industry-wide One Too Many campaign and will this year support the European Union Aviation Safety Agency’s (EASA) Unruly Passengers initiative.

Today marks Baroness Vere’s first visit to Scotland as UK Aviation Minister. While at Glasgow Airport she also discussed how expansion at Heathrow would help strengthen the Union, bringing new UK connections, increased frequency and greater competition for domestic routes.

 

The UK government has set a clear expectation that 15% of slots made available under expansion at Heathrow Airport will be used for domestic flights, helping bring the UK closer together and encourage the growth of prosperity and jobs across the nation.

Lom2

The £1.6m investment ensures Glasgow has more lounge offerings than any other Scottish airport –

Glasgow Airport can today (Wednesday, May 22) unveil the first design images of its exclusive new executive lounge.

Lom2
The Lomond Lounge will be based airside in the departures area and is due to open its doors to outbound passengers later this summer.

More than £1.6 million is being invested in the plush new facility, which will create 25 new jobs and operate between 5am and 9pm daily.

Lom2

This will be the fourth lounge facility to be based at Glasgow – the most of any Scottish airport – as the number of people looking to enjoy access to exclusive lounge facilities is on the increase. Emirates and British Airways both have their own separate facilities at Glasgow while the airport has operated its own hugely-successful UpperDeck lounge for a number of years.


Glasgow Airport Managing Director Mark Johnston said: “We’re very excited about the introduction of the Lomond Lounge later this summer and the superior customer experience it will deliver for our passengers.

“While the UpperDeck continues to be extremely popular with our business and leisure passengers, demand for lounge access continues to rise as more and more people look to start their travels in style.

“The potential for the site of the new Lomond Lounge was huge given its prime location in the airport’s departures area and the fantastic views it offers of both the airfield and the stunning backdrop of the Campsie Fells.

“The Lomond Lounge will set the benchmark in providing a premium level of service and comfort when it opens its doors and I’m sure our customers will be very impressed with everything this luxurious new facility will offer.”

 

The look and feel of the 4,500-square foot lounge has been inspired by the neighbouring Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park and features a mix of table service for a la carte dining and more relaxed seating areas were passengers can unwind in comfort and enjoy a snack or drink before their flight.

The natural colours and contemporary styling have also been balanced with a strong appreciation of Glasgow Airport’s original Basil Spence-designed architecture, with the lounge proudly housing his renowned barrel-vaulted ceilings.

With a capacity of just 100 covers allowing for greater privacy, the Lomond Lounge will offer a wide selection of a la carte breakfast, lunch and dining options featuring Scottish produce freshly prepared by local chefs.

Lounge customers will be able to choose from a range of freshly-prepared dishes from the
breakfast and lunch/dinner menus, whether it’s eggs Benedict or an American pancake stack ahead of the morning business commute, the Lomond beef or vegan burgers for lunch or even a stone-baked pizza with Ayrshire ham or fish with triple-cooked chips with minted mushy peas for an evening meal before heading off on holiday.

Diners will also be able to take in the wonderful views of the Lomond Lounge while enjoying a pre-flight afternoon tea replete with a serving tower topped with delicious finger sandwiches, freshly-baked scones with clotted cream, cakes and pastries.

Further dining options will also include hot and cold self-service buffet options such as a St James’ smoked salmon platter or Navratan korma with baked paneer from the bistro area. A range of craft and premium bottled and draft beers, soft drinks, top-quality spirits, specialist cocktails and award-winning wines including prosecco and champagne will also be available from the staffed bar area.

The lounge will include a business suite area and will feature charging outlets, high-speed WiFi, flight information displays and complimentary national newspapers and glossy magazines.

Lomond Lounge can be booked in advance by visiting: www.glasgowairport.com, or payment can be made on the day subject to availability at that time. The lounge is scheduled to open early August.