Government Confirms £1.1m to Support Derry-London Air Service
The aviation minister Baroness Vere has announced a £1.1 million government subsidy for the “vital” air route between City of Derry and Stansted airports.
The route has been guaranteed through March 2024 thanks to Public Service Obligation money from the UK Department for Economy and Department for Transport. In order to improve links between Northern Ireland and England and sustain thousands of employment, the UK government has sponsored the aviation route since 2017. Up to 19 roundtrip flights per week will be made possible by the £1.1 million grant. Loganair will once again run the route, though there have been rumours that flights may be diverted to Heathrow.
The minister said: “Thousands of people and businesses depend on this crucial travel link, which is why we remain committed to securing the route.
“Our funding will maintain this vital connection between Derry/Londonderry and London, with 19 services operating every week for at least another year, supporting jobs, and providing a boost to Northern Ireland’s economy.”
Councillor Sandra Duffy, mayor of Derry City and Strabane District, said: “This is extremely positive news and I am pleased to see this further commitment to promoting regional connectivity which will be widely welcomed, particularly by the local business community.
“Regular, reliable services to London are critical to the northwest economy in terms of both business and leisure, and a key component of our strategic plans to make this region more appealing and accessible for international investors.”
To improve UK mobility and guarantee that travellers have access to more cheap flights, a new domestic band will take effect on April 1 and apply to flights between airports in England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. This domestic band will reduce Air Passenger Duty by 50%.