Doncaster Sheffield Airport: Peel agree to last-ditch talks to save base
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South Yorkshire Mayor Oliver Coppard and Doncaster Mayor Ros Jones earlier this week approached Peel with details of potential investors interested in taking over the airport which is due to close in a matter of weeks.
Now Peel bosses have said they are prepared to sit down and talk – but are still working towards closure at the end of this month.
Mr Coppard said: “Earlier this week we provided Peel with information regarding market interest and reiterated our offer of financial support while a deal is brokered.
"This evening they have replied setting out their terms for further engagement.
“I have therefore instructed my officials to work with Doncaster Council and Peel to clarify next steps and the nature of their demands.
“Peel have said they remain minded to end operations later this month.
"However, we will proceed on the basis that the information they have shared this evening now signals a willingness to negotiate, and to work with us to protects jobs and operations at DSA.”
Mr Coppard has offered to cover Peel’s losses for the next two years while a buyer for the airport is found.
Don Valley Conservative MP Nick Fletcher has also cautiously welcome the news from Peel.
He said: “Peel have now come back to Oliver Coppard and Ros Jones and stated that they will sit down with potential investors but in the meantime they will continue to work towards closure.
“This is what was expected, a half way house you might say.
“The pressure on all parties remains to save our Doncaster Sheffield Airport.
“To those whose immediate future is in the balance I can only begin to understand your frustration.
“But we must continue to fight and continue to call on Peel to do the right thing.
“I will as always keep you informed over the weekend of any further developments.”
800 jobs are at risk at the Finningley airport, which opened to commercial flights in 2005 and is due to close at the end of this month.