NATS director ‘extremely disappointed’ with loss of Gatwick air traffic contract

Picture: Carey Tompsett/PA Wire

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HAMPSHIRE’S air navigation team has lost its contract to assist planes below 4,000ft after more than three decades carrying out the work.

NATS, based in Whiteley, has been replaced with Deutsche Flugsicherung (DFS) after the German state-owned company clinched a 10-year contract to provide Gatwick Airport’s traffic control services.

NATS says it is ‘extremely disappointed’ about the decision and it is too early to say if jobs will go.

The firm will continue to navigate air traffic above 4,000ft.

Mike Stoller, director of operations (airports) for NATS, said: ‘We are extremely disappointed that the highly competitive bid we submitted to Gatwick has been unsuccessful.

‘We have added considerable value to Gatwick in recent years, building it to the point where with 55 movements an hour it significantly out-performs every other single runway airport in the world.’