EU threatens to ground all UK flights after Brexit – causing misery for British holidaymakers

Without an emergency Plan B, thousands of flights from the UK to Europe could be cancelled if talks between our government and Michael Barnier’s team collapse before March 29, 2019.

But The Times reports that Brussels has banned their European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) from talking to Britain’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) about any backstop scheme to keep planes in the air.

They say that the European Commission has refused to talk about a no-deal aviation scenario before talks are due to end next March.

Meanwhile, aviation leaders say they need at least nine months to create an emergency plan.

One senior figure told the newspaper: “We are the most heavily regulated industry in the world after nuclear, it is not feasible to cobble together a last-minute deal even if there is a political need.”

That means that flights would have to be cancelled from the moment a “no decision” until a new plan was agreed.

It could also affect any Airbus parts made in Britain, as they would no longer legally be allowed to be used in planes licensed by the EU.

Under current aviation rules, the EU's open skies agreement allows EU member airlines, including those registered in the UK, to operate in each other's countries, and enjoy flying rights with other third countries.

But a deal has yet to be put in place for what will happen when we leave the bloc completely.

Experts have blamed the EU for using the situation to hold the UK to ransom over other Brexit issues.

Ryanair has been warning about the effect of a "no deal" on flights for months.

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The budget airline has been telling customers that they can't guarantee that tickets bought for next year will be valid and have revealed they will be putting a "Brexit clause" into its ticket sales for summer 2019.

It will warn customers that it will not be valid if there has been no aviation agreement between Britain and the EU post-Brexit.

But the government has consistently argued that there will not be an issue.

In April, Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said EU ministers “snort with derision at the idea” of planes being grounded after Brexit.

After the SNP's Europe spokesman accused the Government of "complacency" on the issue, he argued that all but one airline believes there will not be any "impediment" to aviation next year.

Mr Grayling said: "Can you imagine a situation where the Spanish or the Italian or the Portuguese or the Greek governments did not want holidaymakers to arrive from the United Kingdom in 2019?

"I've spoken to my counterparts and they snort with derision at the idea that the planes won't fly."

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