NEWS London Gatwick celebrates its 80th birthday and has released historic photos

Gatwick is celebrating the 80th anniversary of its first flight today with a look back at some of the famous faces who have passed through.Vintage pictures show Princess Diana in the control tower in 1988, Pope John Paul II kissing the ground in 1982, and John F Kennedy’s arrival in 1963, months before his assassination.

The airport’s first flight on Jersey Airways, passengers paid four pounds and five shillings, the equivalent of approximately £160 today, for a ticket and first class train fare from London Victoria station.

Paris was 1 of 5 routes from Gatwick in its 1st year, the others were Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Hamburg and Malmo. Since then the figure has grown to more than 200 destinations in 90 countries today.

The airport currently has become the busiest single-runway airport in the world, serving a record 41million passengers last year.

Princess Diana listens in Gatwick Airport’s control tower in 1988
Pope John Paul II kisses ground at Gatwick Airport for first papal visit to the UK in 1982
JFK with UK PM Harold Macmillan in 1963, just months before assassination
Queen as she arrives at the new Gatwick Airport for its official opening in 1958
The first flight on 6 June 1936
Check-in desks when the new Gatwick Airport opened in 1958 following a multi-million renovation
1960s Gatwick was home to shops
Queen and Prince Philip at official opening of North Terminal in1988
Crowds at Gatwick Airport as Queen arrived for the official opening ceremony in 1958


Story & pics from MailOnline