Yesterday Teesside scrapped its controversial ‘development fee’ and on the same day Ryanair restored its service.

Previously the Irish budget airline had said it would not serve any airport on the UK mainland with a similar fee.

Witness its past withdrawal from Blackpool and Newquay. Blackpool closed down not long after, but Newquay decided to axe its development fee before Ryanair agreed to return.

Now it’s the turn of Teesside airport where local Mayor Ben Houchen yesterday welcomed the return of Ryanair.

In total Ryanair will be flying to four holiday destinations over the coming months: Palma (Majorca), Alicante, Faro and Corfu.

Last week we reported Loganair would be increasing its Teesside-London Heathrow route from two to three flights on weekdays on July 12.

And train firm LNER plans to launch a direct Middlesbrough to London King’s Cross service in December.

LNER plans ‘red wall’ expansion

To offset the loss of development fee income (and to offer passengers more shopping opportunities) Teesside will be acquiring World Duty Free in July under a 12-year concession.

However simply laying on flights does not necessarily mean travellers will appear to fill them in these uncertain times.

That is certainly true in the case of Loganair’s route to London Heathrow.

Of course the situation may change once service frequency increases but CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) passenger statistics seen by Business Traveller for the month of April [2021] show that just 209 travellers used the route.

Assuming all flights operated (some may have been cancelled for one reason or another) that’s a very low figure.,