The big issue for airports in central Scotland is whether BAA plc will sell Glasgow or Edinburgh.
I’m not bothered. More urgent are the carpets at Glasgow Prestwick International. Prestwick may be pure dead brilliant. The floor coverings which greet arriving and departing passengers are mawkit. Pure embarrassing.
When I win the lottery, my acts of munificence will include addressing this issue. Some nice slate tiles, I think.
I recognise this is as unlikely as Ryanair putting up the funding. Times are tough with declining passenger numbers so it seems the present owners, a New Zealand company, don’t have the cash for a refurb.
Prestwick is brilliant because it is a wee airport where you don’t have to walk miles to get on the airplane. It has a rail link with fares at half-price. And a direct bus link which is free for holders of the codger travel pass.
It’s not a shopping centre. It offers essential services such as Ayrshire bacon rolls and cup of good coffee. It has a WH Smith where passengers stock up on crisps, sweets, ginger, and magazines with headlines such as: ‘My life was ruined when I discovered my boyfriend was a woman’. I’m more of a Herald and bottle of Buxton water chap myself.
It is a cheery place because it is used by folk off on their holidays. It’s less boisterous since the rules about getting liquids through security. You no longer get people at Onthank International with a litre and half bottle of vodka-laced Coke getting into Calella mode at 6am.
We need to cherish Prestwick airport. It’s got history. When aviation was glamorous Prestwick was a tourist destination. It still has a viewing area. No Elvis, but you can watch Scottish men in shorts and sandals cross the tarmac in wind and rain.
Prestwick must innovate to survive. As ever, I have a plan. The terminal has loads of unused space which could become a hotel, with passengers up and into departure in minutes.
There would be fun. Ceilidhs in the check-in area that’s not needed now it’s all done online. Elvis nights. Karaoke. Burns nichts. A great Ayrshire welcome and farewell for visitors.
It’s just a thought. But let’s get those carpets fixed first.
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