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Thomas Cook: ‘I wish the business well’

Grace FletcherImage copyright
Grace Fletcher

Former flight attendant Grace Fletcher says she and some former colleagues would do anything to get back into aviation.

She loves her current job helping vulnerable children in prison, but would also do anything to “turn the clock,”

; she says, to the 27 years she worked for Thomas Cook.

“It was very sad when everything went down. We were like a family, our Birmingham crew, and I found it really hard the last year without them,” Grace says.

Thomas Cook rebooted today as a travel site almost exactly one year after the company’s spectacular collapse.

The last working hours for the company were tough.

The cabin crew on the last flights were searched and escorted out “as criminals,” she says.

“It had all been so amazing until that moment,” Grace says. “I found out I had no job after 27 years by turning on my phone and seeing headlines.”

She and her former flight crew colleagues have seen the relaunch of Thomas Cook with great interest and were saddened to learn that there would be no aircraft and no flight crew.

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Scott Robson

Scott Robson worked as a holiday representative in Salou and Benidorm.

He says: “It is really nice to know the Thomas Cook brand and the legacy will be continued in the future.

“It’s sad to know that I and my other colleagues who fought so hard to keep the company going will not be part of this restart, but I understand that it will not or would not be the same.

He says it “slightly angered” him that the restart was so close to the anniversary of the crash.

“I’m still saddened by the events of almost a year ago. I’m sure many of my other colleagues do,” Scott says.

However, he wishes the new company “all the success in the world, and I hope that one day I may be able to work for the company again.”

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Ross Milne

Ross Milne, who worked for Thomas Cook for 12 years, says he is “very annoyed” that Thomas Cook is restarting, “especially so close that it is a year after the collapse”.

“[I] does not want to support the company and will use others to book holidays, ”he says.

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Betty Knight

Betty Knight was cabin crew for 12 years.

She says: “Although it was a huge shock and devastation for everyone in the airline when the Thomas Cook group collapsed and took the very profitable airline with them, I know Thomas Cook Airlines would have their workforce back in heartbeat in almost every area. By the company.

“They were wonderful to work with, and they were such a beloved British institution.

“It was not fair or right what happened, so many people were hit hard, let down or bothered.

“But if Thomas Cook could slowly and surely rise again, adapt, change, and grow into the new circumstances in which we find ourselves, I know that this hard time would have been a mistake, a hiccup in the astonishing 178 -year-old heritage that many would be happy to see continue.

“My uniform could be ironed and continued in a few hours, just as thousands of my former colleagues would do. I wish Fosun good luck.”

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Amy Hinch

Amy Hinch was a Thomas Cook business partner.

She says: “For me, I think it’s amazing that it’s being restarted and more jobs will be created from a UK perspective, but I can not help but feel that the name and brand are a bit tarnished.

“I have seen comments from the public about ‘I do not book with those who owe me a holiday, from the collapsed’.

“[It’s] sad that the launch is so close to the anniversary, but that’s what it is. I wish the business well. “

Reservations for the new version of Thomas Cook will only be online without flights, hotels or shops.

Entirely owned by China’s Fosun Tourism Group, the company is licensed by the CAA and is Atol-protected.

The company collapsed in September last year under 1.7 billion. GBP in debt, and more than 150,000 stranded holidaymakers had to be brought home.

Fosun paid 11 million. £ for Thomas Cook trademarks, websites and social media accounts.

The new business model is based on commissions collected from airline, hotel and rental car transactions.

The website starts selling packages on Wednesday to holiday destinations on the government’s secure travel corridor list.

Half of the staff will be former Thomas Cook employees re-employed by Fosun.

It includes many of the senior team as well as technical support and customer support.

The staff is currently working from home. The company had hired an office, but has found that homework proved to be a better option as an online company that started in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

The travel and tourism industry has been hit hard by a coronavirus collapse in trade.

Britain’s Hays Travel, which bought the majority of Thomas Cook’s High Street business and took over many former employees, is cutting nearly 900 jobs.

And Tui, Thomas Cook’s biggest rival before the collapse, received € 1.2 billion. (£ 1 billion) with the help of the German government.

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