Flybe Plans Closure of Six British Bases to Deliver 500 Job Cuts

Flybe Group Plc, Europe’s largest regional airline, plans to shut bases in Aberdeen and Inverness in Scotland, Newcastle upon Tyne in northern England and on Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man as it cuts almost 500 jobs.

Some 160 posts will go at the bases to be closed, together with 116 at its headquarters in Exeter, southwest England. A further 217 jobs will be lost in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland, and Birmingham, Manchester, and Southampton in England, Flybe said in a statement today.

The company, also Britain’s biggest domestic airline, said it has commenced “constructive” collective consulation with the Unite and Prospect unions and the British Airline Pilots’ Association, together with employee representatives.

Chief Executive Officer Saad Hammad said Flybe remains committed to serving the U.K.’s regions and will continue flights to the affected airports event after bases are closed.

Hammad had said Nov. 11 that 500 posts would be cut from a payroll of about 2,750 to deliver 7 million pounds ($11 million) of savings in the 12 months ending March 31 and 26 million pounds annually from fiscal 2014. That’s after Flybe doubled its annual savings goal to 50 million pounds in June.

Balpa said separately in a statement that the Flybe plan will see a reduction in pilots at all bases except Manchester, and that the job cuts are “extemely disappointing” and should be kept to a minimum.

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