Edinburgh Airport staff face investigation

The taxi rank at the airport. Picture: Malcolm McCurrach

The taxi rank at the airport. Picture: Malcolm McCurrach

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An INTERNAL investigation has been launched into the conduct of two senior Edinburgh Airport employees amid allegations they exchanged favours with third parties.

The inquiry into staff members Steve Spalding and Stephen Cunningham was ordered after the two men resigned from their posts within 24 hours of one another.

Both men had been working in the airport’s commercial department and were responsible for running contracts, including car parking, car hire and taxis.

They handed in their resignations a fortnight ago.

It has been alleged that improper conduct by the two men had involved accepting “freebies”.

It is understood the internal probe is examining if favours allegedly received by the workers are linked to outside firms involved with car hire and car parking.

There is no suggestion that the tendering of taxi contracts is involved.

Police Scotland officers stationed at the airport have been contacted for advice, but a criminal investigation has not been launched. “The activities are not criminial, but a breach of internal policies,” an airport source told the News.

Mr Spalding has worked as property and retail operations manager at Edinburgh Airport since January 2008, with specific experience in contract management and negotiation.

Mr Cunningham had been employed as the airport’s ­commercial manager since August, having also previously filled the roles of interim head of retail and commercial account ­manager.

A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Any reports of criminal activity made to Police Scotland will be dealt with robustly.”

A spokesman for Edinburgh Airport confirmed that an internal inquiry was under way. He said: “I can confirm that two members of staff resigned earlier this month. It would be inappropriate for the airport to comment ­further at this stage.”

The investigation comes at a time when the airport is embarking on a major £25 million terminal expansion that will create a revamped security area and new shops.

The year has been viewed as a major success for the transport hub, which set new records with more than a million passengers using the facility in both July and August.