Durham Tees Valley Airport won a judgement today against bmibaby’s withdrawal of services from the airport in 2006. The full costs have not yet been disclosed but the court has indicated bmibaby should pay the Airport Company, who runs the airport, the money it would have received if the airline had stayed the full length of its contract. bmibaby signed an agreement in 2004 to base and operate two aircraft at the airport for ten years. However, in late 2006 the airline withdrew both aircraft from the airport and cancelled all services without warning or discussion. The Airport Company instigated a claim for breach of contract against the airline claiming damages for lost income. In March 2009, the High Court ruled the contract too uncertain to award damages so the group went to the Court of Appeal. “Historically airlines wanted flexible terms from airports so they could move operations between airports at short notice, if they could negotiate better terms elsewhere. However, in recent times where airports have spent large sums of money on improving infrastructure and facilities, airports such as ours require greater security that airlines will operate there for agreed fixed terms,” said Peel Airports Deputy CEO Neil Pakey. “If an airline enters into such a contract, it can’t now simply leave on a whim, as we have now established such contracts are enforceable by the Courts”.”The action of bmibaby in withdrawing their services was totally avoidable and while we found it regrettable to sue our former airline partner they had left us with no alternative,” said Peel Airports Group Airports Director Hugh Lang. A spokesman from bmibaby said the airline planned to appeal the decision.