The best place to move for… airports
Airports are our dirty secret. We hate them. Carbon footprints. Noise. Pollution. Security queues. Another bloody Caviar House. But we love what they do: 21 July 2017 was UK airspace’s busiest day ever with around 2.4 million holidaymakers heading abroad. We like airports close, but not too close. Too close and you get noise and pollution. Airports dampen property prices next door, but raise them once you can’t hear or smell the 747s, as Heathrow’s hinterland in Berkshire, or Manchester airport’s in Altrincham or Knutsford show. They’re a necessary evil, especially if your job means nipping to Dundee every other week, or you have a serious Skyscanner/planespotting addiction; in which case you’ll just move closest to the nearest airport with the cheapest/fewest headbangingly early flights.
In theory, airports compete for custom, but this makes sense only in places like the south-east or Scotland’s central belt, where there’s a choice. Nevertheless, schemes like Skytrax’s World Airport awards rate them. Heathrow is, apparently, our “best”, followed by London City and Gatwick. Which? begs to disagree. No large or busy airport scores highly in its league tables. Instead Doncaster Sheffield tops the bill with 87%. “Peaceful,” reported one passenger, “with no sense of rush or pressure.” It’ll never catch on. TD