British Airways will tonight (1 September) resume flights to Iran after a gap of nearly four years.

The new six times a week service begins this evening when flight BA153 takes off from Heathrow at 2110 and is scheduled to arrive into Tehran’s Imam Khomeini International Airport at 0625 the next morning. It is hoped the new route will open up both the Iranian tourist & business sectors, closed off since the UK imposed sanctions on the country back in October 2012.

Sean Doyle, British Airways’ Head of Network and Fleet, said: “British Airways has a long history of flying to Iran so we are very excited to be launching our new six times a week service, direct from Heathrow to Tehran.

“Iran is a fascinating country, full of amazing and surprising places for tourists to visit and discover its sophisticated and ancient culture.

“The recent lifting of sanctions has also effectively allowed Iran to re-open for business and paved the way for commerce to re-connect with Iran’s economy, which is the second largest in Middle East and North Africa, with a diverse range of businesses and industries.”

The airline described the Iranians as “being very helpful” and “have been as keen as we are for the service to start.”