The next steps for Doncaster Sheffield Airport: Interview with Mayor Ros Jones

The Mayor of Doncaster has discussed the next steps in reopening the region’s airport following the announcement that a leasehold agreement has been signed.
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Mayor Ros Jones announced today (21 March) that an agreement to lease Doncaster Sheffield Airport for 125 years has been signed.

The airport was closed by owner Peel Group in 2022, who refused to sell the site but agreed to negotiate a leasehold with a new operator.

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The Local Democracy Reporting Service discussed the next steps with Mayor Ros Jones:

The next steps for Doncaster Sheffield Airport: Interview with Mayor Ros Jones.The next steps for Doncaster Sheffield Airport: Interview with Mayor Ros Jones.
The next steps for Doncaster Sheffield Airport: Interview with Mayor Ros Jones.

Now the lease is signed, what are the council’s immediate next steps?

“We’re already in the process of seeking to get an operator to run the airport and invest in it, so that’s the next step really.

“We’re hoping that we can make an announcement on that in late Spring, although we don’t have an exact date at this stage.

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How will you ensure that things will be different to when the airport was open previously?

“As a council we will be making sure we do all the correct checks and balances on the individual operator and look at when they come forward to us with their business plan.

“That will form part of our Full Business Case that we take to the combined authority after we have selected the operator.”

Will you be able to push for more airlines and destinations to be available so people can regularly travel from DSA?

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“We will be selecting an operator who can demonstrate the ability to bring us more airlines and everyone else in and actually grow the airport to make it an airport city over time.

“It is very much arms-length once the operator is in place. We are looking for the operator to come forward with a great business case that shows how they’re going to grow the airport and turn it into a financial package and drive the economy forward.”

With a South Yorkshire Mayoral Election coming up in May, how could the election of a new mayor potentially affect the current airport negotiations?

“When anything related to the airport goes to the combined authority it’s got to be a majority who approve it, there are four leaders plus the Mayor of South Yorkshire.

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“I’m delighted to say that all of these people have given their support as we’ve been progressing this bid to reopen the airport.”

Can you give any rough indication of when we could see the airport back open?

“We cannot give an indication as that will have to be in agreement with the operator that’s chosen. I want it open yesterday as most people do, but it will have to be negotiated going forward.

“This is one stage in the operation, we’re seeking to get an operator to come along, we need all those to come forward and stack up, then we’ll put a business case to the SYMCA and I am optimistic that it will go through.

“We’ve got to thank all the hard work that’s been done, particularly by our staff, and by the leaders of South Yorkshire.”

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