An airport has been given a new name to attract soaring numbers of Continental customers.

Yesterday, flight bosses announced Shoreham Airport will now be rebranded as Brighton (Shoreham) Airport.

The announcement came at a press conference unveiling a new cross-Channel route to Paris.

Airport manager Ric Bellfield said he wanted to align the airport “more closely to Brighton”.

He said: “We have been thinking about doing this for a few years and this was an important trigger point.

“There are clear benefits with being associated with our neighbouring city.”

Neil Parkin, leader of Adur District Council, said people in Shoreham were “a bit miffed” about the name change.

He said: “It is confusing for people, and especially taxi drivers. I do get where they are coming from, though. I suppose the French won’t know where Shoreham is but they’ll know Brighton.”

New airline

At yesterday’s press conference inside the newly-named airport, two entrepreneurs launched a new airline – Brighton City Airways.

Neil Laughton, a pilot and adventurer, and flight instructor Jonathan Candelon met while trying to fly the world’s first flying car to Timbuktu.

They promised their new business would be “a local airline for local people and local businesses”.

The new airline is the latest in a long line of new routes from the airport, most of which have failed to get off the ground.

In 2006, Skysouth was founded at Shoreham Airport to serve the same Parisian airport before the company folded in February 2009.

But council leader Mr Parkin said Brighton City Airways “seemed to be made of the right stuff this time”.

The first flights will depart on March 6, flying to the Pontoise aerodrome, in suburban Paris.

Special features include a 15-minute check-in, no hidden fees and a VIP lounge before the hour-long journey to Paris aboard a 19-seat Let 410 commuter aircraft.

Tickets start at £69 one way for early bookings and the plane will make two return journeys every day.

If the venture is successful, the airline plans to fly passengers to new destinations, including Amsterdam and Brussels.

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