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1.5m to spend Easter break abroad

Around 1.5 million people will be heading abroad for the Easter break, leaving those in the UK to contend with some snow followed by cloud and rain after weeks of dry weather.

While tourists head for such spots as Spain and Tunisia, those travelling in the UK will have to put up with engineering work on the railways and likely congestion on the roads.

There will be fewer instances of buses replacing trains on the rail network this Easter compared with last, but a number of major routes will have restricted services.

The Highways Agency has completed a number of roadworks on England's motorways and major A-roads, and suspended work on others.

But roadworks will remain in place on some busy routes, including stretches of the M1 and M25.

Travel organisation Abta said Spain was the favourite holiday destination for Britons heading abroad, with Cyprus and Tunisia also selling well. Top city breaks are Paris, Dublin, Amsterdam, Rome and New York, with skiers heading for Geneva.

About 370,000 people will leave from Heathrow airport over the period from Good Friday to Easter Monday, with the west London airport handling a total of 3.4 million passengers in the period from March 30 to April 15.

Gatwick airport in West Sussex will handle 200,000 passengers over Easter and about 1.5 million from March 30 to April 15.

Over Easter (Good Friday to Easter Monday) 105,000 will leave from Manchester airport; 100,000 from Stansted airport; 65,000 from Luton; 55,000 from Edinburgh and 45,000 from Birmingham.

Also, 85,000 will travel abroad with Channel Tunnel high-speed train company Eurostar.

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From Belfast Telegraph