An airline has announced plans to launch a new connection from Aberdeen to the south of England.
Loganair will run three non-stop flights to and from London Southend every weekday from May 12 along with a Sunday service.
The flight, which will take around 90 minutes, includes an early morning ‘red-eye’ service and an evening return.
The Aberdeen flight is part of new deal including flights from Glasgow and Stornoway.
London Southend, which is less than an hour train journey from the centre of the capital itself, was voted London’s favourite airport by Which? readers six years in a row.
The service itself will increase connections to the city after easyJet axed its Gatwick service earlier this month.
Loganair’s managing director Jonathan Hinkles said: “We’re incredibly excited to be offering the first new air links between London and northern Scotland in many years.
“These new fast and frequent flights to London’s favourite airport, together with our inclusive checked baggage allowance and on-board service, make this a hugely significant development for both Scotland-London air links and Loganair.
“We’re also acutely aware of the limited options for London air travel from Aberdeen following the closure of the Gatwick route and have responded to the Aberdeen business community’s calls for improved air links by stepping into the gap left behind.
“Southend is a very convenient and well-positioned gateway to the Capital.
“It has been voted the UK’s Best Airport three times, perfectly complementing Loganair’s recently earned European Airline of the Year accolade.
“Our schedule is designed to offer maximum flexibility for passengers regardless of their requirements – whether that’s a one-day return, overnight stop or a longer break exploring the city.
“It’ll also be attractive to leisure customers from South-East England wishing to visit the Highlands and Islands with only a quick transfer in Glasgow.”
Glyn Jones, CEO of Stobart Aviation, owners and operators of London Southend Airport, said: “All of us at London Southend Airport look forward to welcoming Loganair as our newest airline in May, when these flights begin.
“With our own railway station just 60 steps from the terminal door, up to six trains an hour into London and our award winning customer service, we expect these new routes to prove very popular with customers flying to and from Scotland.”
Aberdeen International Airport managing director Steve Szalay said: “Regional connectivity to London is essential to Aberdeen for both business and leisure purposes and London Southend offers a new alternative for our passengers.
“The beauty of the new London Southend service lies in the ease of access to central London.
“With train services to Liverpool Street taking less than an hour, passengers can reach the heart of London in quick time and get their trip off to the best possible start.
“Southend itself offers seaside fun with its historic pier, great views of the Estuary and seven miles of beaches and makes for the perfect staycation destination.
“We warmly welcome the London Southend service operated by Loganair and look forward to seeing our passengers take advantage of improved London connectivity.”