A new summer route flying from Southampton Airport to Caen in France has been announced.

Normandy-based airline Chalair will fly a 70-seat ATR 72 aircraft every Friday and Sunday between June and September.

It is the first time Southampton Airport has offered a flight to Caen.

Alain Battisti, Chairman of Chalair, said: "As a Normandy airline based in Caen, Chalair is proud to be part of the region’s touristic offer. Flying from Southampton to Caen, our ambition is to improve the local economy and cultural discoveries, contributing to more exchanges.”

The announcement comes after the 164-metre runway extension was finished in September, with the airport now eyeing up more flights to holiday destinations.

The upgrade means bigger planes can now fly to and from the airport - and there are hopes this could mean flights to Greece, Italy, and Malta.

There are already six easyJet routes that fly from the airport, while British Airways and TUI already run summer routes.

Christopher Tibbett, Aero Director for AGS Airports, which owns Southampton Airport, added: “We are thrilled to not only welcome new partner Chalair for what is the airline’s first UK route, but we are also celebrating Southampton Airport’s first-ever service to Caen.

“Southampton is the only UK airport which will operate a service to the Caen, so we anticipate that the route will be popular with passengers looking to explore this historic French city or those who own second homes in the wider Normandy region.

“With fantastic 40-minute flight times departing Friday mornings and returning Sunday afternoons, Chalair’s Caen service will also be the ideal destination for a summer weekend getaway.”  

The new Caen flights will run between June 28 and September 22.

Each Friday they depart from Southampton Airport at 10.30am and arrive at 12.15pm local time in Caen - with a 40-minute flight time.

Sunday flights depart from Caen at 10am and arrive at 9.45am local time at Southampton Airport, giving a 45-minute flight time.