The Caithness and North Sutherland Regeneration Partnership (CNSRP) has welcomed today’s announcement by The Highland Council that a contract has been awarded to Eastern Airlines to run scheduled flights between Wick and Aberdeen for three years.
These flights will be supported by a Public Service Obligation (PSO), funded by Transport Scotland and The Highland Council.
CNSRP partners, led by The Chamber, and supported by funding from Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd for the business case, have worked together to ensure that commercial fights can restart from Wick. These are now confirmed to start on the 11th April this year.
Ian Ross, Independent Chair of the CNSRP Executive board today said:
“I warmly welcome and am delighted to see the announcement of the award of a contract for flight services from Wick to Aberdeen. This has been a key strategic priority for the CNSRP Partners. There have been concerted efforts from all of the CNSRP partners over the last two years to help deliver this important outcome”.
“In particular I want to recognise the considerable efforts of the Chamber and Highland Council and the key support of the Scottish Government and the Dounreay Site – all partners in the CNSRP – in leading and funding this crucial work.”
“The return of this lifeline service will strengthen the region’s connections, supporting existing employers, and allow us to maximise the many exciting opportunities to develop new jobs linked to the offshore wind and space sectors and other emerging industries.”
“Ensuring the return of air services to Wick has been a key goal of the CNSRP programme and the fact that this has happened and that the aircraft will be based at Wick for a part of the week is doubly pleasing”
“When the aircraft starts locally it means early morning flights which will offer a full day’s business in Aberdeen and crucially onward connections to the UK and internationally”
“With flights supported by a PSO giving good fares and a robust and reliable timetable CNSRP partners will continue to work to develop opportunities to ensure the continued success of Wick John O’Groats airport which is a vital asset for the development of the region as we recover from the COVID pandemic”
“Net zero and sustainability are at the heart of the CNSRP programme and partners will work closely with the operator(s), HIAL and other relevant bodies to ensure sustainable development of the service.”