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November 23, 2021updated 06 Jan 2022 5:43am

UK Government announces £4.3m funding to improve regional flight connectivity

The UK Government has announced that it will provide up to £4.3m in funding for direct flights between London and Newquay as well as London and Dundee, with flights expected to start as early as 9 December.

By Jasleen Mann

In order to strengthen these transport links, £1.8m of the total funding will be awarded to Cornwall Council over the course of two years, as a result of a Public Service Obligation (PSO) agreement that will enable flights from London to Newquay.

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The government will also provide up to £2.5m in funding for direct flights for two more years in a PSO agreement that will ensure flight connectivity between Dundee and London until 2023.

Loganair flights will operate between Dundee Airport and London City Airport, while flights operated by Eastern Airways from Cornwall Airport Newquay will arrive at London Gatwick starting on 9 December.

This latest development has the support of Aviation Minister Robert Courts, who acknowledges the £4.3m ($5.7m) plan as a part of the UK Government’s build back better plan relating to recovery from the pandemic.

“We’re maintaining these vital transport links including the hugely popular London to Dundee and the reinstated Newquay to London routes, for people right across the country for tourism and business travel,” said Courts.

“The government is fully behind UK regional connectivity and strengthening these routes as we build back better from the pandemic.”

Along with the benefits of regular direct flights, the regions can expect an increase in tourism, business, and employment opportunities.

In addition, the plan is aligned with the Department for Transport’s aim for domestic aviation to reach net zero.

Philip Desmonde, the Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for transport, said: “While connectivity is vital, we must seek to minimise the impact of air travel on the environment.

“The council has worked with all parties to ensure that the environmental impact of the air route is kept to a minimum by selecting aircraft which have lower emissions and lower noise impacts, as well as aligning schedules to ensure capacity meets demand.”

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