Heathrow has opened its temporary terminal which has been built to cope with the surge in passengers after the Olympics later this summer.
The structure has been constructed in a staff car park and will cater for Olympic participants and officials for the three days after the games end on August 12.
The airport has estimated that the terminal will process more than 10,000 competitors and 37,000 bags over the three days.
Transport minister Theresa Villiers, who attended the opening of the terminal today, said: “August 13 is expected to be the busiest day in the whole history of the airport. 10,000 athletes, coaches and support staff are going to be coming through this temporary terminal.
“Having this extra departure capacity is going to be very important in ensuring that Heathrow can cope with that huge volume of departing passengers over those few days after the closing ceremony.”
Heathrow’s head of Olympic operations Nick Cole said that the reason for the temporary terminal was “to ensure that passengers using terminals One, Three, Four and Five get their normal high levels of service”.
“If we do this and we get 10,000 athletes through this facility, it means that everybody else in the other terminals will feel just like it’s a busy summer day here at Heathrow,” added Cole.
Report by Rob Gill