London Southend airport has announced the latest in a series of new routes, with Loganair’s existing flights between Stansted and Derry-Londonderry switching to Southend later this year.
As reported earlier this year, Loganair took over the Stansted-Derry service in February, following the demise of Flybmi.
Flights between London and City of Derry airport benefit from subsidies under a Public Service Obligation (PSO) contract, funding for which has been renewed by the UK government.
The service will switch from Stansted to Southend from October 27, with 26 flights per week using 49-seater Embraer 145 aircraft.
The government said that timings would allow for Derry-based travellers to travel to London and back for business the same day.
Southend airport is located in Essex, and is served by up six direct rail services in Liverpool Street station.
Loganair already operates flights from Southend airport to Aberdeen, Carslisle, Glasgow and Stornoway.
This week it was announced that Wizz Air would add routes from Southend for the first time this winter, with services to Bucharest, Sibiu and Vilnius.
Just hours later Ryanair – which already operates flights out of Southend – announced plans to serve Bucharest and Vilnius from the airport.
Announcing the decision to renew funding for the London-Derry route, Grant Shapps, Secretary of State for Transport, said:
“This announcement is another demonstration of how the UK government and its resources enhance the everyday lives of the people of Northern Ireland.
“I’m backing this route because I understand just how important these daily direct flights linking London and Northern Ireland are. Whether it brings businesses together or reunites loved ones it will enhance connections across the UK.
“UK airports like City of Derry Airport play an important role in delivering domestic and international connections that help passengers travel further and link businesses to global trade partners, and this government subsidy will help support an important connection to London, helping people do business, visit family and go on holiday.
“The renewal of this funding is a clear example of the government’s own ambitions for a thriving economy as it works to ensure all regions and nations of the UK are well served by airports and routes to the rest of the country.”