British air traffic control company NATS said it is restricting the number of aircraft flying across the south of England and those taking off from airports.

The restrictions are in place following technical problems at its Swanwick control centre in Hampshire.

The national air traffic control body said the fault has not resulted in the closure of UK airspace or the suspension of all flights in or out the UK.

It said the restrictions are in place to ensure safety.

"NATS is taking every step to restore services and has contingency plans in place to minimise any disruption," it said.

There have been minimal delays to flights at Heathrow, with services heading south from the west London airport the only ones affected.

At Gatwick in West Sussex, flights heading for Jersey in the Channel Islands were affected.

Southampton Airport told passengers: "A widespread air traffic control issue is currently affecting all flights to and from Southampton Airport.

"Air traffic control are currently working to resolve this issue as soon as possible but please check with your airline for the most up-to-date information."