A UK airport abandoned for years could reopen to passenger flights – including to Spain and Cyprus.
Manston Airport in Kent was closed back in 2014 after reporting huge losses.
Formerly known as RAF Manston, the airport was first used in 1916 during the First World War, and also during WWII due to its location close to the Channel.
It has since been used as a filming location, most recently the Sam Mendes blockbuster Empire of Light, as well as a lorry park for drivers stuck between the UK and France.
However, a huge renovation project hopes to allow the airport to reopen as early as 2026.
RiverOak Strategic Partners (RSP), who own the airport, want to first open it as a cargo airport, operating around five flights a day.
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The huge project is likely to cost upwards of £500million due to the huge infrastructure changes.
This is because there have been few updates since the RAF left the site in 1999, so new terminals and updated runways are needed.
Most of the buildings will also need to be demolished, while new roads will also need to be built to deal with increased traffic.
However, if the cargo routes are profitable then it could lead to passenger flights by 2028.
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Dutch airline KLM could be one to return, while talks with budget airlines Ryanair, easyJet and Wizz Air also started pre-pandemic, according to local media.
With early morning slots at London airports such as Stansted and Luton already full, this could mean Manston could offer these in-demand routes instead.
And if they do go ahead, destinations such as Spain, Cyprus and Malta could resume as well as domestic flights across the UK.
Manston Airport isn't the only UK airport that hopes to reopen.
Plymouth City Council leader Richard Bingley is backing a bid to reopen Plymouth Airport, which closed back in 2011.
FlyPlymouth chief executive Raoul Witherall said there was a good case for bringing back flights to and from the city, which could include routes to Amsterdam.
And Swansea Airport is reopening for after 19 years, announcing a new flight route to and from Exeter Airport launching this year.
Yet some airports have been forced to close – Doncaster Sheffield Airport shut for good in October 2022 after airline Wizz Air ceased operations.
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