Neil Garwood, managing director of Southampton Airport, is to step down from his role in June after nine years with the organisation.

As managing director, Neil has overseen the delivery of the airport’s Master Plan and over the past year has been dedicated to progressing the planning application to enable a 164-metre extension to the current runway and expanding the business.

Commenting on his move, Neil said: “Southampton Airport is a very special place for all those who work here, and now is a difficult time for everyone associated with our airport.

“We have made huge progress on the planning application to deliver a much-needed longer runway. This will enable Southampton to offer more routes and choice for passengers, more jobs for local people and, vitally, provide a significant boost to the local and regional economy. We are closer than ever to making that a reality and I will be watching with huge interest to see those plans come to life in the years ahead.”

Steve Szalay, who is currently managing director at Aberdeen Airport, will lead the newly restructured Southampton team as operations director. Steve will join the Southampton team on the June 1, 2020 with Neil’s last day in the business being Friday, June 19.

Derek Provan, chief executive of AGS Airports, which operates Southampton and its sister airports Glasgow and Aberdeen, said: “Neil is a valued member of the AGS executive team and has led on Southampton’s future development by delivering the airport’s expansion plans to the point we hope to receive approval for our planning application in the coming months.

“These are difficult times for AGS as for all airports, and I am very sorry to be losing Neil, however, I know Steve is relishing the opportunity of leading the team at Southampton as we rebuild the business.”