An air link with London has been restored from Teesside airport for the first time in more than a decade.

The first flight to London City airport took off today, together the first service to Newquay.

Eastern Airways’ route to the capital will run daily between Monday to Friday, rising to a twice-daily schedule on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays as soon as demand strengthens.

The Newquay flights run on Mondays and Fridays.

Daily flights to Aberdeen and Belfast City have also been relaunched following the airport’s closure due to the coronavirus pandemic.

KLM will be restarting a route to Amsterdam Schiphol on August 3, initially with daily flights, moving to three-times daily as the market allows.

The airport continues to be in discussions with airlines on the intorduction of further flights soon.

Tees Valley mayor Ben Houchen said: “It’s fantastic to see another set of flights depart as we continue to reopen the airport to passengers after an uncertain time.

“With these routes, we’re reconnecting Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool with London for business after years of not having this most crucial of flights departing from our airport.

“Today’s launch will make our ties with the capital stronger than ever as we look to recover our economy following the coronavirus pandemic.

“It has been a difficult few months, but our airport is once again gaining traction to deliver more new routes for local people and exciting opportunities for businesses already located here, or those looking to come to the area, which will be crucial in my jobs plan for the region.”

London City chief commercial officer Richard Hill added: “This route to Teesside is further evidence that London City is best positioned to connect the capital to UK regions.

“The team at Teesside have been brilliant partners and we look forward to working with them to promote this service as the best way to do business in London and quickest, and most cost effective, way to discover the tourism gems of Yorkshire and the north-east.”

Cornwall airport Newquay managing director Pete Downes said: “Air connectivity between the north-east and the south-west is vital for business and leisure travel, given the distances and journey times required by any other means.

“As Cornwall begins to reopen, this important new route has launched at the perfect time for us to welcome visitors from Teesside and the wider region this summer, as well as supporting growth in business links between two UK regions packed with potential.”