Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) has been designated by the Department for Transport (DfT) as a Level 3 (Fully Coordinated) airport during the night-time period during British Summer Time.

LBA’s application was approved in November following a consultation process conducted by the DfT and capacity assessments by an independent third party. The approval by the DfT means that LBA will be designated Level 3 during the night-time period (2300-0700) during British Summer Time, allowing effective controls that better manage available capacity.

Level 3 designation will give LBA and its slot coordinator more effective powers to comply with the planning conditions and quota limits LBA is subject to. It will also support airport operations to remain within environmental obligations, including night flights and noise limits.

The designation will not increase the airport’s capacity, or result in amendments to existing planning conditions; it is an administrative process to ensure efficient and fair use of an airport’s existing capacity in accordance with EU slot regulations and International Air Transport Association (IATA) scheduling guidelines.

The new designation will be effective from the Summer 2024 scheduling season and LBA will continue to operate as a Level 2 airport, with schedules facilitated, at all other times. A level 2 airport is one where there is potential for congestion during some periods of the day, week, or season, which can be resolved by schedule adjustments mutually agreed between the airlines and facilitator.

Nicola McMullen, aviation director at Leeds Bradford Airport, said: “Level 3 designation will enable LBA to have robust controls and powers to comply with the planning conditions we are subject to whilst enabling us to better manage the operation of flights at LBA. We are grateful to the Department for Transport for their time and consideration of our application and together with recent developments such as the announcement of our £100m plus regeneration of the terminal building, LBA:REGEN, we are continuing to develop LBA to be the airport Yorkshire deserves.”