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Heathrow Goes From Europe’s Gateway to UK’s Travel Nightmare

  • Emirates balked at demand to cap ticket sales before yielding
  • Across Europe, airports are struggling with travel rebound
Suitcases are seen uncollected at Heathrow's Terminal Three baggage reclaim, on July 8. 

Suitcases are seen uncollected at Heathrow's Terminal Three baggage reclaim, on July 8. 

Photographer: Paul Ellis/AFP/Getty Images

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Less than a decade ago, London’s Heathrow was the undisputed hub airport for Europe, with thousands of daily passengers and an ambitious expansion plan that included a brand new runway. Terminal 5 was still a novelty -- the UK’s largest free-standing building hosted a string of glitzy shops and restaurants, including one founded by celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay. The airport was associated with aspiration, growth and an outward-looking Britain.