Orkney MSP Liam McArthur has today welcomed confirmation from Loganair that the mid-morning service from Kirkwall to Aberdeen will be reinstated from September.
The service was replaced earlier this year by one departing Kirkwall in the early afternoon. Mr McArthur immediately highlighted the difficulties such a change in the timetable would mean for some constituents attending hospital appointments in Aberdeen. In particular, Orkney’s MSP drew attention to the implications for those living in the isles for whom the change would inevitably mean an extra overnight stay away from home.
Writing to Mr McArthur this week, Loganair Managing Director Jonathan Hinkles confirmed that the mid-morning flight would be reinstated “from September and rolling forwards into Summer 2018.”
Commenting, Mr McArthur said:
“I am absolutely delighted that Loganair has agreed to reinstate the mid-morning flight from Kirkwall to Aberdeen. Ever since the summer timetable was published earlier this year, I have been contacted by constituents affected by the change to the timetable. For some isles patients, the impact has already been extremely serious with potentially life-changing consequences.
“These concerns were discussed in detail when I met with Loganair and NHS Orkney last month. At that meeting, Loganair’s Managing Director, Jonathan Hinkles recognised the airline’s responsibilities as a lifeline provider and committed to reviewing the situation.
“I am therefore grateful to Mr Hinkles for taking action to reverse the earlier decision. I would also like to thank all those who took the trouble to get in touch with me to highlight what the loss of this service meant for them. Without those real and tangible examples, it would have been difficult, if not impossible, to make the compelling case to Loganair.
“While this confirmation from Loganair will not undo the stress caused over recent months to those affected, I hope it will offer them and others the reassurance and confidence they seek going forward”.