Manchester Airport – the Northern Gateway to the UK
Do you know where 1.8 million books are purchased every single year?
No, it is not on Amazon, and it’s definitely not in a Barnes & Noble store. In fact, it is the bookshops in the Manchester Airport that are making millions in book sales every year. The number is only dwarfed by the number of passengers who use this airport each year – a whopping 22 million of them!
Clearly, it’s a busy airport. In fact, it is the third busiest airport in the whole of the United Kingdom.
The location of the airport plays a major role in making it a hub of heavy passenger traffic throughout the year. Almost a third of the population of the UK can reach the Manchester Airport within just 2 hours from their location. To cater to them, 60 airlines operate more than 160,000 flights from this airport to over 200 destinations around the world.
Manchester Airport has been around since 1937, while its construction actually started in the November of 1935. Then, it was called the Ringway Airport, because it is situated in Ringway. When World War II broke out, the airport was turned into a strategic base for the Royal Air Force (RAF). It became a centre for military-grade aircraft production and also served as a training centre for the parachutists. Once the war was over, the RAF left the premises and it returned to its civilian legacy.
Irrespective of the time in history, Manchester has always remained one of the busiest airports in the whole of the UK. Naturally, the airport has expanded over the years to entertain the large number of footfall fans that flock the city and has now become the largest airport outside the capital city of London.
Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 of the Manchester Airport were inaugurated by the Duke of Edinburgh in 1962 and 1993 respectively. However, Terminal A, which is a part of Terminal 3 today, became functional in 1989 after it was inaugurated by one of the UK’s most loved public figure, Princess Diana.
Today, Manchester Airport boasts of two parallel and full-length runways, three fully operational terminals, 254 check-in counters, 42 air bridges, and 500 public toilets. It also houses seven hotels and a good 120 shops and restaurants for the passengers to relax. Considering the one million pints of beer and 3 million hot beverages that are sold every year at the airport, it can be safely said that the passengers do feel relaxed there.
Apart from the relaxed passengers and efficient flight management, there is another side of the Manchester Airport known only to a few people. This airport is one of the largest sponsors of art in the United Kingdom. Throughout its history, the airport has donated to the art scene in the country, and today that number stands at £8 million.
Manchester Airport has won several awards over the years. These include UK Airport of the Year, Best Major UK Airport, Best UK Airport, and many more. There is no doubt that this piece of British history will be decorated with many such laurels in the future too.
For now, Manchester Airport is doing what it does best – Welcoming people to the land of the Queen from across the globe.