Virgin Atlantic has announced plans to cut around 3,000 jobs in the UK and end its operation at Gatwick Airport.
The announcement comes as the aviation industry is struggling amid the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic. Passenger numbers have fallen to almost zero for many airlines over recent months and some are now battling financial woes to try and survive.
The airline, which currently employs about 10,000 people, has also announced plans to reduce the size of its aircraft fleet from 45 to 35 by summer 2022. The airline has recently been seeking emergency loans from the UK government.
Brian Strutton, the general secretary of the Pilots’ union Balpa has said;
“Our members and all staff in Virgin Atlantic will be shocked by the scale of this bombshell. We will be challenging Virgin very hard to justify this.”
Rival airline British Airways also recently said that it could not rule out closing its operations at Gatwick airport.
Gatwick Airport is the ninth busiest airport in Europe and the busiest airport in the UK operating as a single-runway airport.