Gatwick Airport has appointed Stephen King to the position of Head of Airline Relations.

In his new role, Stephen will be responsible for developing Gatwick’s existing airline relationships to their full potential and growing the airport’s carrier base – the airport already flies to 200 destinations in 80 countries.

The announcement of Stephen’s appointment follows record November passenger figures. 2.8 million passengers traveled through the airport, +7.3% on the same month last year, while long-haul growth soared +20%. Contributing to this long-haul growth was Thomson’s new connection to Sri Lanka which started last month.

In line with Gatwick’s long-haul growth, cargo volumes increased +12% in November.

Stephen joins Gatwick having worked at Virgin Atlantic for over ten years and previously at shipping and freight provider American President Lines (APL). Whilst at Virgin Atlantic, Stephen was responsible for revenue management and sales for both passenger travel and air cargo. Most recently he was heading up Virgin Atlantic’s Asia Pacific team based in Hong Kong and prior to this was General Manager India for the airline.

Stephen holds a first class degree in Operations Research and Management from Lancaster University.

Gatwick Airport’s Head of Airline Relations Stephen King said:

“Gatwick is a completely unique airport in so many ways. Serving more passengers from one runway than any other airport in the world with a mix of low-cost, charter airlines and full services – providing passengers with more choice than any other UK airport.

“Long-haul at Gatwick continues to go from strength to strength. I’m looking forward to working with the airport’s existing airlines and the queue of airlines who would like to bring in new routes.”

Gatwick Airport’s Chief Commercial Officer Guy Stephenson said:

“Gatwick continues to grow strongly – breaking records as passengers respond to the variety on offer at the airport, low-cost, charter airlines and full services airlines. This year Gatwick has added new routes to destinations in China, Peru, Canada, Costa Rica, Nigeria and the United States.

“We’re seeing a particularly strong passenger response to our connections to Asia. Just last week Cathay Pacific announced that their four times weekly service would go daily.

“Stephen’s experience will be an important asset in Gatwick’s continuing long-haul success story and further route expansion.”