The discovery of runway damage at Stansted caused more than two dozen flights to be delayed today.

The problem was discovered during an hourly routine surface inspection shortly after 9am.

Both departures and arrivals were suspended, affecting at least 27 flights, to allow “minor runway works to be safely carried out”, the airport said.

The runway reopened an hour later.

Passengers affected were mostly with Ryanair.

Services affected included those to Dublin, Oslo and Verona.

Some inbound flights were diverted to Luton airport.

A Stansted airport spokesman said that a “small area of the runway was cut out and refilled” because of a “crumbling” of the concrete surface.