Sector Focus

Business Travel Sector Focus The latest news from the sectors that matter to business

Website helps firms understand clean air

A website has been launched to help businesses get to grips with the Clean Air Zone, which will be introduced in Birmingham city centre next year. Business Breathes is the one-

stop site for fleet managers and self-employed drivers who need to prepare for the zone’s introduction in January 2020. The website has information on

low-emission vehicles that will comply with the zone’s requirements, grants and incentives that will be available if businesses need to upgrade their vehicles to avoid the charges, as well as recharging and refuelling points. Business Breathes is part of Brum

Breathes, Birmingham City Council’s air quality campaign to reduce emissions of harmful pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide (NO2). Councillor Waseem Zaffar,

cabinet member for Transport and Environment at Birmingham City Council, said: “The Clean Air Zone will represent a significant change in terms of the way people travel around the city, so it is important that those who rely on the use of vehicles for their business are able to make the necessary preparations and access the relevant support ahead of its implementation in January 2020.”

For more details, visit

Lift-off: Nick Barton, Gavin Thompson (Gulfstream) and Sir Peter Rigby

A new class-leading aircraft made its debut at Birmingham Airport at a special event to showcase it in the region. XLR Executive Jet Centre Birmingham hosted the Gulfstream G280 super-midsize business jet aircraft to guests and potential users. The aircraft has a range in excess

of 4,000 miles with the capability of flying non-stop from the UK to New York and the event was the

first time this aircraft type has visited the Midlands region. The event was also an opportunity for XLR, which is the premium travel brand and subsidiary of Rigby Group plc, to promote its state-of-the-art executive jet centre in Birmingham. Sir Peter Rigby, chairman of the

Rigby Group, said: “We have an excellent relationship with Gulfstream and we were delighted to bring this world class aircraft to our XLR

Executive Jet Centre Birmingham. The aircraft had travelled down from an event at our Jet Centre in Liverpool and completed the journey in just 17 minutes!” Nick Barton, CEO at Birmingham

Airport, added: “We’re proud to have enabled the impressive G280 aircraft to be showcased in Birmingham, and to support our business partner, XLR, which plays a vital role in supporting executive flying for our region.”

Airport buses go green thanks to £1.4m grant

Birmingham Airport

Birmingham Airport has been awarded a grant of £1.4m to electrify its bus fleet. The funds have been awarded by

the Ultra-Low Emission Bus Scheme, administered by the Department for Transport (DfT) and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). The grant will partly fund the

purchase of electric buses as well as the installation of dedicated bus charging infrastructure. The remaining investment will be made by Birmingham Airport. Nick Barton, chief executive

officer at Birmingham airport, said: “Since 2012, the airport has reduced its CO2 per passenger by 20 per cent per passenger.

60 CHAMBERLINK March 2019 “This funding will support us in

working towards lowering our CO2 per passenger even further which is just fantastic. “We have made significant

customer service improvements across the airport to increase capacity and improve passenger experience, with the vision of positioning Birmingham as Europe’s leading airport. “The electric buses form part of

this vision, not to mention their sustainability benefits being ultra- low emission.” The airport is now negotiating

with a bus manufacturer and aims to have infrastructure works in place in order to start the fully electric bus service in the autumn.

World-class aircraft is unveiled in Birmingham

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