Transport plans are in place to help people get to and from this year’s Sunderland Airshow with as much travelling ease as possible.
A huge part of the event planning goes into organising the transport and parking arrangements for the large numbers of visitors expected to the three day event (27, 28, 29 July).
Sunderland City Council Cabinet Member for Communities and Culture, Councillor John Kelly said: “Working with our public transport and traffic partners, we try to ensure that the travelling needs of anyone visiting the airshow are met.
“That can include everything from park and ride services and additional parking provision on the seafront, to extra services on the Metro and buses.
” We’d ask everyone to play their part in this by planning their journeys well in advance and to help we’re providing transport updates before, during and after each day’s event programme on www.sunderlandinternationalairshow.co.uk.”
For visitors travelling by car there will be park and ride services operating from the Stadium of Light, Deptford Terrace, Fulwell Quarry and Downhill at a cost of £2.50 per person with under 5s travelling free.
Seafront parking is available at a cost of £10 and can be pre-booked via the Sunderland Airshow website or purchased on the day.
There is limited Blue Badge parking available at Morrisons, Seaburn Showfield and Marine Walk while all Park and Ride services are accessible.
There will also by clear road-side directions for motorists travelling to Sunderland on the main routes into the city with regular traffic updates on the Sunderland Airshow website and social media channels, with local radio bulletins throughout the day on both BBC Newcastle 95.4FM (https://bbc.co.uk/Newcastle or https://bbc.co.uk/tyneandwear) and Sun FM 103.4 (https://www.sun-fm.com/sunderlandtraffic.php).
Nexus, the public body which owns and manages the Tyne and Wear Metro, will be running extra Metro trains to get people to and from the Airshow with extra staff on duty to help advise passengers
Customer Services Director at Nexus, Huw Lewis, said: “Metro plays a key role getting thousands of people to the Airshow, and we will have extra trains running to cope with the demand.
“This is one of Metro’s busiest weekends of the year. We expect services to be busy over the weekend, particularly at Seaburn station, with queues following the event.
“Extra Metros will be running, but my message to customers is to please leave plenty of time for your journey.” (https://www.nexus.org.uk/)
Leading regional bus company Go North-East will also increase their services including direct services to and from Washington.
Go North East Commercial Director, Stephen King said: “We’re delighted to be providing the Park and Ride service once again for the Sunderland Airshow, and looking forward to transporting visitors to the thirtieth show. Details of our services can be found at https://www.gonortheast.co.uk/airshow.”
Chief Superintendent Sarah Pitt of Northumbria Police, added: “We are pleased and proud to once again be supporting the Sunderland Airshow, and we are expecting hundreds of thousands of people to attend the event over the course of the weekend.
“Work is ongoing with Sunderland City Council, Nexus and other partners to ensure visitors get to and leave the site as efficiently and safely as possible.
“Motor patrol officers will be on duty to assist in keeping traffic flowing throughout the main routes and we would again encourage visitors to take advantage of the increased public transport and Park’n’Ride services which will be in operation.
Supt Pitt added: “Roads will be busy, so please be patient if driving to and from the event and leave plenty of time for your journey. Make sure you switch off your sat-nav as you approach Sunderland as it will direct you to the most popular route, thereby causing delays. Instead, follow the signs to designated parking areas.
“Please keep an eye on the Northumbria Police social media feeds for the latest messages and travel advice, and anyone with questions should ask an officer on patrol or a nearby steward.”