I can only speak from an observer/passenger point of view but in general there doesn't seem to be as much holding at LGW
as at LHR
. Most of the times I've gone into Gatwick it has been a straight in but then I am usually not landing there in the morning rush. Same as other airports with busy times and less busy times but pretty much a constant flow of traffic all day long. You never wait more than a couple of minutes between movements on a normal day and if you're there when it's busy you can watch them lined up to get in and out and as soon as one clears the runway another is down/cleared to roll. It's quite a sight and a magnificent co-ordination job by ATC.
On the question of go-arounds - I would say there are more than average due to the simple fact that it is a one runway operation that is incredibly busy. I myself have been on a US 333 that went around at LGW
due to aircraft with burst tyre on the runway.
[Edited 2007-03-01 19:27:00]