Airline is vital to help boost the region - claim

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CHEAP fares airline Ryanair and Leeds Bradford Airport can work together to boost tourism in Yorkshire, it has been claimed.

The airline can bring in more visitors from abroard, promote Yorkshire to foreigners, link up business destinations and create jobs, a seminar organised by Marketing Leeds was told.

The airport can help by continuing to work closely with the airline to offer more flights.

John Parkin, chief executive of Leeds Bradford Airport, said that the airport saw a growth of 10 per cent in passenger numbers last year whereas nationally passenger numbers were down by four per cent. He said it was important for this growth to benefit the whole region.

Mr Parkin said: “It’s very important that Leeds is a significant option for tourists and having an airline with pan-European reach like Ryanair connects us to Europe.”

He said that while increased numbers of local people were using the airport, even more were travelling to Manchester. “It’s a habit we need to shift,” he said.

Mr Parkin said that bringing travellers into Yorkshire was important for the local economy and that Ryanair could achieve this. He said: “Ryanair is a stand-out opportunity to bring many people into our region. Ryanair is a clear part of our plan to grow.”

Ken O’Toole, director of route development with Ryanair, said that the company’s close relationship with Leeds-Bradford Airport was proving beneficial. He said: “The investment we put in will benefit youselves, the investment you put in benefits ourselves.”

Tony Burdin, chief executive of Sheffield Mutual Friendly Society

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