A long-serving former Ryanair director is joining Norwegian Air as the carrier sets out on a flightpath to recovery from near collapse due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Adrian Dunne, with more than 30 years aviation industry experience, becomes operations executive vice president.

He started his career with Aer Lingus and has worked for Ryanair for the past 15 years as director of ground operations and operations director.

Norwegian Air was forced to abandon low cost long-haul transatlantic flying from airports such as Gatwick last year as the Covid crisis hit and has been running limited domestic sevices in Norway as it undertakes a financial restructuring.

Dunne will take over from Johan Gauermann, who was appointed interim head of operations in June.

Gauermann will return to his permanent role heading flight operations when Dunne takes over at a date yet to be announced.

Chief executive Jacob Schram said: “I am very pleased to welcome Adrian Dunne onboard. We are preparing for a highly competitive environment after the pandemic, and I am confident that his industry expertise coupled with his lengthy experience as a people focused leader will be a valuable contribution to our team.”

Dunne, who will be based at the airline’s Oslo headquarters, added: “Norwegian is an ambitious and innovative airline, with its customers and employees at the core of everything they do.

“I look forward to contributing to the future success of the company, in a time where the entire aviation industry will undergo significant changes.”