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A Clare TD has said hope is not lost when it comes to restoring Aer Lingus’ base at Shannon Airport.

On Friday, Taoiseach Mícheál Martin (FF) held a virtual meeting with four representatives of the Aer Lingus cabin crew based at Shannon Airport.

Aer Lingus recently announced that it would not be laying off its staff at Cork Airport temporarily when the runway closes later this year.

In May, Aer Lingus announced that it would no longer maintain its base at Shannon, where 83 cabin crew are employed. The company reiterated to an Oireachtas committee last month that the decision would not be reversed.

Speaking to The Clare Echo, Cathal Crowe TD (FF) detailed that workers had the “sympathetic ear” of the Taoiseach during the meeting. He stated that a further meeting is to be held this week.

According to Deputy Crowe, Aer Lingus management have had a potential change of heart when it comes to keeping staff on. “In Shannon we’re in stoppage time, it was a good meeting and no one in Shannon is giving up yet”.

Keeping jobs and the Aer Lingus cabin crew base in Shannon were described by Deputy Crowe as mutually symbiotic.

He acknowledged that an “extremely big jump” is required for Aer Lingus to change their future plans for Shannon. Crowe flagged that it was not solely a political issue and the national flag carrier had a big responsibility as a commercial entity.

“I wouldn’t be confident on anything but I won’t give up hope. I love sport and I have seen Champions League finals won three minutes into stoppage time,” the Meelick native commented. “Hope doesn’t fully fade when there is dialogue,” he added.

Workers had until Tuesday of last week to outline to the airline if they wishes to be deployed from Shannon or take a redundancy package. As part of the next phase, Human Resources staff within Aer Lingus are to visit Clare to meet with its Shannon employees for one on one meetings.

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