STANSTED AIRPORT CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEE
Minutes of a meeting of the Passenger Service Group held at the Airport on
Wednesday, 24 January 2007
The meeting commenced at 10.15 a.m.
* Mr R Gilbert (Chairman) Independent
* Mr A Chalmers Representative of STACC
* Mr T Fegent Representative of STACC
Mr N Harley Representative of STACC
* Mrs B Hayter Independent
* Mr P Odrich Independent
Representing Stansted Airport Limited (STAL)
Mr J Harrison Customer Insight Manager
Ms D Bland Operational Solutions Team
Mr G Redgwell Essex County Council (Secretary to the Group)
1. PRE MEETING TOUR
Members were reminded of the pre-meeting tour of H M Revenue and Customs
The Group was advised that one vacancy remained following the resignation of
Richard Mansbridge. This would be for STAL to fill.
3. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
These were submitted on behalf of Nigel Harley.
The Minutes of the meeting held on 25 October 2006 were confirmed as a true
5. CHANGES TO THE FORECOURT AND SHORT STAY CAR PARK
Recent changes were described to the Group by Barry Carter, Head of First and
Last Impressions Team.
The forecourt area immediately outside the Terminal could now only be used by
airport buses (travelling to and from the long and medium stay car parks) and by
taxis dropping off passengers. Drivers of private vehicles could drop off
passengers in a separate lane further away from the Terminal. Drivers of
vehicles wishing to go straight to the Radisson Hotel or to the car rental drop off
area could now take a different and direct route, cutting down the amount of
through traffic going past the Terminal. Security aspects of the proposal were
also mentioned (details not reproduced in these minutes).
The short stay car park now had defined Zones, with their own entry and exit
barriers, and with clearer ticketing arrangements. The previous 15 minutes gratis
period for drivers picking up passengers had been withdrawn and would not to be
6. FIRST AND LAST IMPRESSIONS TEAM
Barry Carter made a presentation on the work of this Team, which had been
established as part of ‘Inspiring Service Excellence’ changes in 2006. The
purpose of the Team was to provide a central focus to all public landside areas
(the Terminal forecourt, highways network, coach station, car parks and car
rentals return areas).
The Team’s work covered a range of activities, including:
- liaison with partners and stakeholders.
- acting as the ‘eyes and ears’ of contract performance.
- carrying out health and safety inspections.
- delivering agreed maintenance plans.
- contracts compliance.
- acting as a single point of contact.
- involvement in the Crisis Management Team.
The big issues of the moment included the construction of the Public Transport
Interchange (PTI); access off the M11 onto the airport; the upgrade of the tunnels
from the PTI into the Terminal; planning for the extension of the Terminal; and
joint work with other agencies on drink driving campaigns.
Future work in 2007 would include implementation of the national no smoking
legislation and the Reduced Mobility Bill; and working (particularly through the
Facilities Manager and Customer Service Teams) on specific projects to improve
the level of service to customers.
The Group thanked Mr Carter for his two presentations and he left the meeting at
7. REPORT BY CUSTOMER INSIGHT MANAGER
The Customer Insight Manager submitted a written report on a number of
developments, which is reproduced as Annex “A” to these Minutes. Some items
in this report were supplemented orally and details are set out in Minutes 8-9
below (to be read in conjunction with Annex “A”).
8. FACILITIES : NO SMOKING LEGISLATION
It was reported that, whilst the legislation allowed BAA to ban smoking on all of
the airport site (as it is private property), a pragmatic approach would be taken, to
provide some smoking areas landside outside the Terminal. These would be
clearly signed and offer an element of shelter. No smoking would be allowed in
the Terminal building itself, by either passengers or staff.
Officers were looking at examples of good practice in Scotland and the Republic
of Ireland, where similar legislation was already in force.
9. SECURITY : DEFICIENCY NOTICES
These Notices had been responded to, and no follow up action had been
required by the DfT.
10. REPORT BY HEAD OF RETAIL TRAVEL SERVICES
On behalf of the Head of Retail Travel Services, Jeremy Harrison apologised that
a report was not available for today’s meeting. This report would be passed to
the Secretary as soon as possible and circulated with the minutes (see Annex “B”
11. QUALITY SERVICE MONITOR (QSM)
A range of QSM figures were received. The overall passenger ratings for each
month in the final quarter of 2006 (out of a maximum of 5) were as follows:-
Month Arrivals Departures
October 2006 4.1 3.8
November 2006 4.2 4.0
December 2006 4.0 3.9
The Group noted some particular parts of the service scoring 3.5 or less. It was
acknowledged that coach/bus transfer of passengers continued to score poorly
but that the percentage of passengers involved was very small.
STAL officers undertook to clarify what was meant by the term ‘Bussing Service’.
12. FEEDBACK CARD ANALYSIS
The Group received the monthly feedback statistics for the final quarter of 2006.
Statistical information obtained was as follows:-
Total complaints BAA related BAA complaints
complaints related to number
October 2006 792 750 1:2,763
November 2006 299 279 1:5,937
December 2006 197 157 1:11,100
The Group noted the continuing repercussions of the strict security arrangements
implemented from 10 August, which had now begun to be alleviated to some
13. BAGGAGE DELIVERY STATISTICS
Figures for the final quarter of 2006 were submitted for both companies providing
baggage-handling facilities – Servisair and Swissport (split between Ryanair and
non Ryanair handling).
14. FLIGHT PUNCTUALITY STATISTICS
Figures for August 2006 were submitted in respect of the four major southeast
airports (for departures only).
The figures for Stansted could be summarised as follows (rounding up and down
may mean figures do not add up to 100%):-
Percentage of Flights departing within x of time
Month 0-15 16-30 min 31-60 min 61-180 min 180min
August 2006 58 20 15 6 1
These were poorer than usual, but did reflect delays bought about by the
implementation of new security arrangements during the course of the month.
15. FACILITY VISITS AND INDIVIDUAL REPORTS
A number of issues of concern and interest had already been covered in reports
submitted by STAL’s officers and by comments made by members. Additional
points were now raised by Group members and are dealt with in Minutes 16-21
below. Where possible, responses were given, as indicated in italics. Other
issues would be pursued and progress reported at the next meeting.
Members raised concern about the level of cleanliness in a number of areas at
The Facilities Manager was aware of these concerns and would be pursuing the
issues with the appropriate contractors.
17. SIGNAGE IN CAR PARKS
Signage in some car parks was confusing.
It was agreed that the standard of way finding did need improvement in some
areas. This would be done as the last element of the car park upgrades.
18. SIGNAGE FOR NON-ENGLISH SPEAKERS
In response to a question, it was confirmed that signs would not normally display
languages other than English – using more than one language tended to make
them over complicated and presented issues about which other languages to
use. STAL tried to use signs with ‘obvious’ symbols which were recognised
Consideration would be given to producing leaflets in a range of languages.
19. FACILITIES FOR PASSENGERS
Points were raised about the lack of shelter for passengers waiting for taxis; the
standard of brakes on trolleys; and internet facilities landside.
STAL would follow up the first two issues.
STAL had looked at expanding the internet facility but the operator had
expressed little interest in doing so. Some expansion might be possible in the
future when the Terminal was enlarged.
20. BISHOP’S STORTFORD ACCOMMODATION GUIDE
In response to a question, it was confirmed that this Guide was available at the
main Information Desk.
In response to a question, it was confirmed that the passes held by Group
members could be used to obtain discounts at concessions on the airport site on
the same basis as they were used by staff.
22. FUTURE PRESENTATIONS AND TOURS
Subject to speakers being available, or facilities being open for visiting, the Group
agreed that the following tour and presentations be included in the programme for
Visit to Fire Station.
Presentations on supply of fuel to the airport, and to individual aircraft; and the
project undertaken to resurface the runway.
Presentation by representative of car rental company.
23. DATE AND TIME OF NEXT MEETING
This was confirmed for Wednesday, 25 April 2007, starting at 10.00 a.m. (or at
the end of the tour if later).
Members asked that information be provided at that meeting on the ‘middle
managers’ Group members would be likely to meet during their visits to the
The meeting finished at 12.40 p.m.
Report by the Customer Insight Manager
The following is an update of issues raised at the meeting on 25 October 2006:-
Forecourt – observed motorists The new project is under a review
ignoring 20 mph speed limit – how period, in which speed
could this be better controlled? measurements have been taken.
This review period will continue for
some months to come. In the short
term it has been decided (by the
First & Last Impressions Team) to
purchase two solar powered speed
detectors, with installation due in
Security queues. See update below.
(a) In the table below are the new routes that are due to start in the next few
DESTINATION AIRLINE COUNTRY START DATE
Antalya SunExpress Turkey 8 February
Deauville Ryanair France 28 February
Izmir SunExpress Turkey 26 March
Bremen Ryanair Germany 1 April
Toronto (Hamilton) Flyglobespan Canada May
Brussels Ryanair Belgium 1 June
(b) The latest figures for January 2007 show:-
Total number of Airlines (Scheduled and Charter) 34
Total number of Destinations (Scheduled and Charter) 158
Total number of Countries Served 35
(c) STAL is currently working with airlines on the implications the collection of the
new airline tax will have on passengers from February 2007. As has been widely
reported, there is still some confusion on how this will be handled by individual
(d) From 1 February 2007, STAL has been given permission by Immigration to
depart any domestic flight from any gate, rather than just via the domestic gate.
This gives more flexibility to the aircraft stand planning process; it also allows
STAL to alleviate pressure on the Domestic Lounge that can at times get
crowded. All arriving passengers will continue to use the Domestic Lounge.
A number of signs have been placed on the way to the lounge and within the
lounge itself, to inform frequent flyers. STAL is also expecting the check in staff
to make it clear as and when appropriate.
(a) The PTI project works continue – the completion date of the shell and core works
had to be pushed back from the end of November 2006 to January/February
2007, due to the adverse weather experienced (high winds). There will then be a
period of fit out works by the transport providers, before it is operational.
(b) The improvements to the two inner tunnels continue – completion date will be
beginning of March 2007.
(c) A project to improve all the wayfinding in the Mezzanine area is due to be
completed in March/April 2007.
(d) A project to improve a significant amount of wayfinding within the Departures
landside area is due to be completed in April/May 2007.
(e) The FIDS project, which has approval for the installation of four more FIDS tree
structures within the Terminal, is estimated to be delivered at the end of March
(f) The project to open up the Gate 83 area in the Domestic Lounge, by removing
the Belfast Lounge wall, is due to be completed by the end of March 2007.
(g) STAL is working closely with Immigration on providing a new look to the
Immigration area. As well as providing additional desk capacity, which should
hopefully address some of the congestion issues, Immigration want to make the
area become a visible Border, and will do this with changes to the wayfinding and
Immigration Officers uniform. All this is envisaged to be achieved by the end of
(h) In line with UK legislation, BAA will be banning smoking from all of its buildings
from 1 July 2007. A working group has been set up to co-ordinate all the
necessary activities that will need to take place to meet the deadline.
Accident statistics for staff and passengers have shown a continued downward trend
over the last year, which is excellent news considering the increasing passenger
During the next month STAL is running with Uttlesford District Council a ‘don’t drive
tired’ campaign for staff and the public. This will be done in a roadshow style format,
and STAL will be handing out free coffee to drivers!
At the end of this month there will be a Fire Safety and Police awareness roadshow for
staff. This will be focusing on fire safety in the home, and driving awareness by the
(a) Passenger numbers increased by 3% in November 2006, bringing the moving
annual total to 23.6 million.
(b) Although STAL has been working under the August 10 imposed ‘heightened
security measures’ for a while now, the impact on the Security Process has been
significant, with September and October being the worst months by far. With the
increased number of security officers and other measures that have been brought
in, STAL started to notice an improvement during November, which has
continued through to December. Whilst the airport is still under the restrictions,
improvements to the process have meant that a good level of service is again
being provided to passengers.
(c) STAL had a very busy week in the run up to Christmas as forecasted. However,
due to a number of initiatives, forward planning and the large number of
volunteers, it again provided a good level of service to all departing passengers.
The airline community complimented BAA on providing the service level it did, in
what was expected to be a very challenging week.
(d) As a result STAL has started to see a return to normality in terms of the amount
of adverse feedback about the security process and other areas that was seen in
September and October. Whilst there are still the occasional challenging days, it
is now a much more manageable issue.
(a) STAL has had two deficiency notices from the DfT over the period, which were
related to the enhanced measures.
(b) The Security SLA for October was 88.2%, November was 98%, and December
was 93.2%, against a target of 95% and above.
(c) As mentioned, due to the increased number of security officers recruited and the
various initiatives, STAL had returned to a good level of service being provided.
An example of some of the initiatives are that STAL installed an additional x-ray
machine in the Domestic Reclaim Hall and, with DfT approval, was allowed to
process passengers through this facility and directly in to the Departure Lounge.
This meant that, at peak times during the Christmas week, an effective call
forward process was implemented, with a couple of separate processing areas.
(d) The DfT is proposing to introduce liquid testing as an additional security measure
over the next month. STAL is currently working with the DfT to understand the
new process and assess the impact it may have on the process.
There were no incidents to report.
Report by the Head of Retail Travel Services
In response to the recent increased security measures at UK airports, the landside
Boots unit closed at the end of December 2006, to allow Central Search to grow in size.
This unit will be re- provided as an express unit retailing key lines only and will be
positioned on the site previously occupied by Hargreaves Sports. This new Boots offer
will open from March 2007. The airside Boots unit will continue to trade as normal.
At the end of January Austin Reed will close and a new retailer – Nation - will be
opening at the beginning of April. Nation is a multi brand board-sports clothing retailer
that will bring a new range of exciting brands to Stansted’s customers.
Krispy Kreme opened on 24 October and this catering offer has received positive
feedback from passengers and staff who have enjoyed this new doughnut offer.
From early April STAL will be opening a new Cranberry catering unit which will be
located opposite the Krispy Kreme unit in zone J. Cranberry offer an alternative healthy
snack concept with dried fruits and nuts.
STAL is continuing to trial new customer service initiatives across its catering facilities.
Pontis have recently introduced a 2nd serve option for those passengers who would like
to order a coffee/dessert after their meal but who do not want to leave their table and
personal belongings. The Windmill pub has also trialled a seated table service which
provides a more personal service and assistance for the independent traveller. Both of
these trials have worked well and have received positive feedback and STAL is now
working with its catering concessions on how to introduce these initiatives as a more
Caffe Alba won the October nomination for Food and Beverage employee of the month.
“Welcome Hosts” continue to work well and this service initiative has been extended to
Colin and Justin’s Christmas Gift Guiders
On 8 and 9 December there was a personal Gift Guiding Service available to
passengers within the IDL. All Gift Guiders were personally trained by Colin and Justin
and the promotion proved a great success. Passengers were very receptive to advice
and tips on what to buy when shopping at the airport.
Nintendo WII Promotion
The Nintendo stand in the IDL has proved a great success with passengers, adults and
children alike. The WII is a new games console from Nintendo and is available tax free
in Dixon’s and HMV.
Shopping collection continues to provide great service and added value to customers.
During December transactions increased by 31% compared with last year’s levels.
The main forecourt reconfiguration works were largely complete before Christmas, with
the final phase of works, directional way finding signage, new bus stops and customer
help points to be completed over the next few weeks. This project will now greatly
improve both forecourt operations, provides additional capacity and provides customers
with a great First and Last impression of the airport for private car set-down, car park
transfer bus and private hire/taxi services.
Short Stay Car Park reconfiguration
This project has enabled STAL to improve short stay car parking operations, service and
experience and specifically enabled it to introduce new short stay car park products -
Fast Track from August 2006 and Valet Parking from November 2006. Valet parking is
an official on-airport Valet Parking product operated by NCP as part of the short stay car
park contract. Initial demand for this product and feedback from customers following its
launch has been very encouraging.
New Car Rental Back-up Facility
Following completion of the new car rental back-up facility on Coopers End Road, which
is due to open in February, UDC Planning Officers have further given detailed planning
permission for Budget Car Rental to build a new back-up facility on the current vacant
4th site, which was always safeguarded for this further development as part of the
original development. It is anticipated that the building of the new Budget back-up
facility will commence in February and be open for Summer 2007.
SPARK 2006 Parking and Rental Awards
Stansted was delighted to have some winners in the SPARK 06 Parking and Rental
Awards. This award scheme rewarded and recognised the staff who work in the parking
and car rental industries across all BAA airports. Customers and staff nominated teams
and individuals who demonstrated excellent customer service across several categories
between 10 April and 30 September 2006. Category winners were presented with a
trophy by Quentin Wilson (of TV and motor journalism fame) and a cheque for £1,000 at
a ceremony at the Waldorf Hilton hotel last November.
Stansted celebrated several successes at the SPARK 06 awards ceremony. Joe
McConn from Budget Car Rental at Stansted won the award for Best Car Rental
Manager, and Mick Spalding from NCP at Stansted was runner-up in the award for Car
Parking Employee of the Year. Budget built on its success from last year where it won
best new car rental initiative.
In addition, both Andy Williams and Dominic Turner from the Stansted Retail Travel
Services team were rewarded as the Best Overall BAA Location Team across all BAA