Stobart Air is to invest €25m in its business as part of a three-year growth plan announced this morning.

The airline - which was formed following a change in ownership at Aer Arann - said it would also add 60 staff to its workforce, made up of 24 pilots and 36 cabin crew.

Stobart Air currently operates 43 regional routes as part of franchise agreements with Aer Lingus and Flybe, and carried almost 1.5m passengers last year.

The company says it is currently on track to increase that figure to 2m in 2017 – and hopes to grow it further in the next three years.

"[The investment] will support the aircraft lease cost and the employment cost for staff to service that aircraft," said Graeme Buchanan, Managing Director of Stobart Air.

"What we're hoping to do is base those aircraft in London Southend Airport and expand our route network under the Flybe franchise and drive further passenger growth."

Central to that expansion is the introduction of jet aircraft to Stobart's fleet – which is a departure from the turboprop planes it has traditionally used.

According to Mr Buchanan, the move opens up a new range of potential routes, while also increasing the number of passengers it can carry on any single flight.

"Traditionally we have operated turboprop aircraft, I suppose best known when you look at the aircraft you can see the propellers on the outside," he said.

"What we're adding now are conventional jet aircraft, and that allows us to carry more passengers to a greater distance and it also improves the economics of our business."

Those aircraft will be based in London and Mr Buchanan said they are eyeing some internal links within Britain – while also extending to new destinations within continental Europe.

Of course those European links are reliant on there being a continuation of smooth travel arrangements between the EU and UK post-Brexit - and Mr Buchanan says this is a major concern for his business.

"It's already starting to impact our business, the devaluation of sterling has had a negative impact and we're also seeing it hamper our efforts to recruit staff," he said.

"We are in contact our political representatives here and in the UK and we would urge them to formulate a plan, communicate that plan and then implement it as early as possible to remove the uncertainty.

"The planning horizon in aviation is quite long - we would have our flights on sale significantly in advance and the network decisions that underpin those flights going on sale and made even in advance of that."