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Flybe to resume flights from Exeter to London

Exeter-based airline Flybe has announced plans to run services three times a day to London. For passengers it means the return of a direct link from Devon to the capital. Flybe is Europe's largest regional airline, but it's suffered in the past 18 months.

It's had to cut its budget by £40 million and make 450 staff redundant. Our Business Correspondent Seth Conway reports.

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Exeter-based Flybe post upbeat trading results

Flybe says it's on course to return to profit Credit: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Exeter-based airline Flybe says it's on course to return to profit following its third quarter trading results. UK scheduled revenue per seat was up 2.3 per cent, while costs per seat (excluding fuel and restructuring costs) were down 5.2 per cent.

Last year the airline posted losses of £41m and announced 500 job cuts - more than 100 of them in Exeter. In November it announced a new management team. It now says job losses will be down to 450.

New route in the summer

A new air route between Newquay and Birmingham will start next summer.

The airline Flybe plans a direct service which will run 7 days a week from May.

The airport lost its link to London Gatwick earlier this month. Managers welcome the news and hope tourism in the South West will benefit.

The airline Flybe plans a direct service between Newquay and London to run 7 days a week from May.

Flybe chairman to stand down

The man credited with turning the Exeter based airline, Flybe, into a major player in the European aviation market, is stepping down as chairman after more than 20 years with the company.

Jim French joined the airline in 1990 when it was known as Jersey European Airways, later becoming British European.

He later oversaw a major revamp of the business as it was forced to compete amid the rise of low-cost rivals, and was rebranded Flybe in 2002. Mr French was awarded a CBE in 2009.

His role as chairman will be filled with immediate effect by the former Safeway finance director, Simon Laffin.

A reshuffle at the top of the company has already seen the departure of the chief financial officer, Flybe UK's MD, the head of outsourcing and the corporate strategy director.

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