London Gatwick Airport is planning to increase its workforce in order to efficiently handle baggage delivery at the airport.

The move comes in response to baggage delivery delays of up to five hours last week due to an insufficient number of workers.

Ground and cargo services provider Swissport has failed to meet Gatwick Airport’s service standards for staff, as well as for ground handling agents, who supply services to airlines such as unloading baggage from aircraft and delivering them to the baggage hall.

Swissport currently offers baggage handling services to 27 airlines, including Virgin, British Airways, Thomas Cook and Thomson at the airport.

The airport is now planning to employ its workers to handle passenger baggage services in an effort to reduce delays, although they are restricted to unloading flights.

"The airport is now planning to employ its workers to handle passenger baggage services in an effort to reduce delays."

Gatwick Airport spokesperson said: "This has been frustrating for passengers and we are disappointed with the recent arrival baggage service. Swissport has committed to getting this right, and we are working closely with them to help.

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"Gatwick is providing additional staff. Although we are not permitted to unload the aircraft, we are assisting with transport of bags to the terminal and the unloading of bags onto belts. We’ve also introduced a free baggage home delivery service for those who prefer not to wait.

"We are committed to providing an excellent service every day and will continue to work with our handlers and airlines to deliver the high standards of service we expect."