Highlands & Islands

Change made to isles' Edinburgh flight

Aircraft propeller
Image caption Flights between Stornoway and Benbecula have already been reduced

An airline has withdrawn its Friday flight between Edinburgh and Stornoway on Lewis and introduced a new Monday Stornoway to Edinburgh service.

Loganair said the Friday morning service had been stopped because of consistently low passenger numbers.

But SNP MSP Alasdair Allan said it was because of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar's failure to offer adequate funds to support flights.

The comhairle said it "completely rejected" the MSP's claims.

The new Monday flight will leave Stornoway at 08:50 and land in Edinburgh at 10:00.

Phil Preston, chief operating officer of Loganair, said: "It is with regret that due to consistently-low passenger numbers Loganair has been forced to make a commercial decision to withdraw the Friday morning service between Edinburgh and Stornoway.

"We have however introduced a new direct, Monday morning service between Stornoway and Edinburgh."

'Commercial decision'

Mr Allan and Western Isles SNP MP Angus MacNeil have raised concerns about the comhairle's financial support for flights.

The withdrawal of the Friday service follows a reduction of Stornoway to Benbecula flights to three days a week.

Mr Allan said the loss of flights could not be good for the Western Isles' economy.

Comhairle leader Angus Campbell said the criticism was unfair.

He said: "Loganair have confirmed that the reason for stopping the service on a Friday morning is 'consistent low volumes'.

"It is a commercial decision."

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