SCOTTISH airline Loganair is today relaunching two routes from Aberdeen – reconnecting the city with Birmingham and Newcastle

as the first step to restoring full services at one of its major hub airports after the coronavirus pandemic.

The first flights to Birmingham and Newcastle will both take off from Aberdeen this afternoon.

Services to Birmingham will initially operate four days each week before building from late August to two flights in each direction every weekday plus a Sunday service.

Alongside services from Aberdeen to Belfast and Manchester, Loganair stepped in to take on the Birmingham route following the collapse of Flybe in early March.

Flights between Aberdeen and Newcastle will operate every weekday afternoon and on Sundays, building to twice-daily by mid-July. There will also be onward same-plane services linking Aberdeen to Exeter and Southampton with a short stop at Newcastle.

Loganair – the largest operator at Aberdeen Airport – says it has continued to fly more services than any other UK passenger airline during the crisis.

In addition to keeping lifeline routes to the Highlands and Islands open through the pandemic, the airline has also maintained services for essential workers from Aberdeen to Manchester and Norwich.

All flights will be operated under the “Safe Steps to Healthy Flying” protocols which Loganair announced May 14.

Chief executive Jonathan Hinkles said: “With many businesses turning their thoughts to restarting work, the UK’s regional air connectivity will be more important than ever.

“For the sake of the recovery of the economy, we must enable key workers across the oil and gas, construction, service and healthcare sectors to travel swiftly, comfortably and safely throughout the country.

“As well as providing travel guidance on which basis businesses can plan, we believe our announcement will lend confidence to people looking forward to visiting families and friends once social restrictions permit.”