Government pledge on funding for City of Derry - London flights
The Transport Secretary has announced the government will continue to subsidise direct flights between Londonderry and London.
Since May 2017, the Department of Transport and Derry City and Strabane District Council have providing funding for the route between the City of Derry Airport and London Stansted, operated by Flybmi.
Speaking in the House of Commons on Thursday, Chris Grayling said the deal will be renewed until May 2021.
"The government is committed to this route because it strengthens the union, protects choice and boosts trade and travel opportunities," he said.
"It will be welcomed by businesses in the north of Northern Ireland because corporate trips to and from London within a day will remain a possibility.
"The extension will continue to provide easy access for tourists to visit the spectacular causeway coast line, as well as spectators attending the 148th Open golf championship at Royal Portrush this summer."
In July last year, there were fears for the future of the airport as there was no minister in place at Stormont to sign off on £2.5m in funding.
In response to the subsidy announcement, the Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, councillor John Boyle, said the airport is an "important regional gateway" that is an essential part of the future development of the North West City region.
Chairperson of City of Derry Airport, Albert Harrison, said the London route is a key element to the sustainability of the airport and welcomed the funding.
"Maintaining frequent, conveniently scheduled air services to London is vitally important for the economic development of the North West City region and for the development of our regional economy and the social development of our region," he added.
"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."
Belfast Telegraph Digital