Bmi/British Midland have operated this route for almost 25 years with currently 4 flights each weekday using Fokker 100's and a slightly reduced frequency at weekends. I understand the route is a good money earner for BD
as the loads are always very good and the fares always significantly higher than their services from nearby MAN
(so good yields). In fact it is usually cheaper to fly BD
which is twice the distance!
BACX operated LGW
services with J41's until early 2003 but this was dropped when the airline restructured and sold their entire J41 fleet to Eastern Airways. Many airlines have tried the LGW
route but none seem to last more than 2 or 3 years.
The train takes care of many of those wanting to get into central London. What makes you say the train is a complete nightmare? Have you had bad experiences? I've personally found GNER's service one of the better ones on our useless rail network in the UK, though it always seems very, very busy when I have used it.
Bmi Regional will be adding LCY
at the beginning of November with 4 flights each weekday using a leased ATR42 which will try and attract some of those rail travelors. Hope Bmi know what they are doing, I would have personally favoured VLM on the route with their knowledge and expertese of LCY
ops and markets. Hopefully the services will last longer than the 'try it and drop it' attitude that British European had at LCY
in recent years where the LBA
service lasted just 5 months back in 2000.
Looking back a very long time ago, LBA
also had flights to STN
(Air UK F27's) and LTN
Like a fine wine, one gets better with age.