GOOD news for anyone who is hankering after a trip to Colman’s Mustard Museum. From October you will be able to fly direct from Durham Tees Valley Airport (DTVA) to Norwich on Loganair’s new service.

The Scottish airline is also starting round trips from our region to Aberdeen.

These services will be aimed primarily at people working in the offshore energy industries.

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Neither Norwich - home to Delia Smith and Alan Partridge, nor the Granite City - represent a massive coup that will drastically turn around the airport’s long running decline, but anyone who cares about the survival of DTVA will welcome yesterday’s positive moves.

Airport owner Peel has long insisted that it didn’t buy DTVA as a site on which to build houses and business parks while allowing the loss-making aviation side to fade away. In interviews with the Echo it has denied rumours that enquiries from operators keen to bring services to DTVA have been ignored, insisting they are in it for the long haul. Indeed, airport bosses reiterated the message this week that new longer haul international services could be a possibility, but admitted that nothing is imminent.

Hovering on the horizon is the prospect that Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen will fulfil his pre-election pledge to try and bring the airport into public ownership. Right now that scenario looks as distant as DTVA bagging a regular service to London let alone wowing us all with destinations farther afield.

What is pleasing however is that Loganair has shown faith in the airport and for the first time in a while people are talking about growth potential rather than irreversible decline.

We believe that a thriving airport has a key role to play in the area’s future prosperity.