Scottish airline Loganair today announced it is stepping in to secure two key European routes from the North East following news that Flybmi is set to appoint administrators.
Loganair will be setting up an operating base from Newcastle Airport, and operating regular flights to Brussels and Stavanger, following news that flybmi has cancelled all flights and is calling in administrators.
The East Midlands-based airline operated flights on routes to 25 European cities, including Aberdeen, Bristol, City of Derry, East Midlands, London Stansted and Newcastle.
From March 25, Loganair will operate the services out of Newcastle using a 49-seat Embraer 145 aircraft, a move which will come as great relief to the region's business community given the importance of the routes.
The airline will provide early morning double daily rotations between the North East and the Belgian capital of Brussels between Monday and Thursday, while also operating two evening departures on Friday and Sunday.
The schedule enables a full working day in the European Union’s administrative capital, overnight trips or a number of different weekend options.
It will also offer six services per week to Stavanger, Norway’s oil capital, on weekdays and Sundays.
The move will lead to the Scottish airline establishing an operating base out of Newcastle Airport and the potential for further expansion from the North East.
Loganair's managing director Jonathan Hinkles said: “It’s always really sad to see an airline go out of business, and our thoughts are with all those affected – particularly staff members.
"We’re working on employment opportunities for pilots, cabin crew and engineering support staff to strengthen the Loganair team.
"There is no doubt that trading is tough, but Loganair is – we believe – in the strongest position of any UK regional airline.
"We’ve done a lot of work over the last two years to secure our future as an independent regional airline, and despite the challenges posed by fuel and carbon costs and Brexit, we are strongly placed to take up new opportunities as they arise
"Our new routes from Newcastle complement our existing activity across a distinct geographical area, acting as a logical fit with our network, while also enabling the exciting development of setting up a base from the airport."
Tickets can be booked online at www.loganair.co.uk or by calling 0344 800 2855.