bmi plans first UK Lille service

bmi regional has announced another new international air route from Leeds Bradford
and a first for the UK.Starting 23 April, direct flights will link Leeds Bradford with Lille in
northern France six days a week with convenient flight schedules for
both business and leisure purpose travellers.  Flights are also timed to
offer excellent connections at Leeds Bradford to and from Edinburgh and

The new flights not only mark the first direct air route between the
French airport and the UK, but will also create an important air link
between two key industrial cities which are also twinned. Both Leeds and
Lille are busy transport logistics hubs, serving many similar industries
including mail order and textiles. Lille is also France’s third largest
city, a leading commerce centre with a growing profile and gaining
popularity as a tourism destination and alternative gateway to northern
France. Previously unserved from the UK, passengers travelling to Lille
would need to fly into Paris and take onward ground connections,
similarly travellers to Leeds and the north of England would need to
travel via London or Manchester.

Stewart Adams, managing director bmi regional, said:
“This is an important addition to the bmi regional European flight
network and underlines our commitment to serving Leeds Bradford Airport
and the surrounding region.

“Leeds and Lille already share a common and special link with their
twin-city status. This important new air link will not only serve to
strengthen that bond in terms of both business and tourism, but will
also raise their respective profiles and encourage more opportunities.”

Cllr Stewart Golton, Chair of the Board of Directors of Leeds Bradford
Airport said:
“It is exciting news to hear that Leeds Bradford will be the first UK
airport to have a service to Lille. With strong business links in the
Yorkshire region, Lille will prove extremely popular with the textile
and mail order sectors. As we are also twinned cities, this news will be
greatly received and will strengthen the connections and existing
relationships even further.”


Jean-Christophe Minot, Lille Airport ceo, said:
“The Lille community and airport welcomes bmi regional and our first
scheduled air service to the UK. Leeds and Lille enjoy a close business
and historical relationship. Our two dynamic cities will now become even
closer thanks to the new, direct flights.”

This latest announcement from bmi regional follows the recent news that
the Aberdeen based airline and subsidiary of bmi will be increasing its
jet aircraft fleet by 25% during 2007 and also launching direct Leeds
Bradford-Copenhagen flights from 26 March. 

Using modern Embraer jet aircraft on the new route, passengers can look
forward to attractive business and economy fares and the renowned bmi
regional service, which continues to offer complimentary in-flight
refreshments to all passengers.