MORE than 400,000 surgical masks destined for the NHS have been loaded on to trucks at Airbus’ HQ in Toulouse, France, and are en route to the UK.

The cargo is part of a total of six million surgical masks that have already been brought to Europe from China using several Airbus test aircraft.

Airbus has established an air bridge to China to bring large quantities of surgical masks to Europe to support governments in the fight against COVID-19.

The first UK consignment of face masks – 406,000 surgical masks and about 1,000 FFP2 masks – is due to arrive at Airbus’ Broughton site in North Wales on Friday.