The Guardian - Joanna Partridge

Trade unions have condemned the owner of struggling Manchester airport for inflating bosses’ pay by almost a quarter in the first year of the pandemic even as the wages for staff were cut and hundreds of workers were let go.

The north-west hub has been hit by weeks of travel disruption and hours-long queues for passengers, leading to the unscheduled departure of the airport’s managing director Karen Smart, who stepped down on Tuesday.

However, the annual report of Manchester Airports Group, which also owns London Stansted and East Midlands airports, showed pay for the group’s managers rose by £2.8m to £12.2m in the year ending 31 March 2021 – the first 12 months of Covid when air travel slumped.

This represents an increase of 23% compared with a year earlier. Meanwhile, the highest-paid director at MAG – understood to be its chief executive, Charlie Cornish – was awarded an extra £500,000, a rise of 25% taking his total remuneration to £2.5m.

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