We had a book in the school library on the Greatest Britons and Thomas Cook was one of them. He was the pioneer of holiday travel and it is such a shame that such a great name in the industry has now disappeared. But the demise of the company he founded will have come as no surprise to the industry. Infact, for Thomas Cook, it was always a question of when rather than if.
A massive debt mountain meant that collapse was always going to be on the cards. So Thomas Cook has now joined the likes of Clarkson, the International Leisure Group (ILG) and Monarch. All great companies which in the end couldn´t pay their debts.
The demise of Thomas Cook will be felt hard in the Balearics in the short term but in the long term I suspect that other companies will just move into their place, contracting the hotel beds which had been allocated to Thomas Cook and also picking up their clients. The demise is obviously a big blow for Thomas Cook´s 1,500 staff across the Balearics. It is the end of the summer and there are not too many jobs around in the industry.
So it will be a long hard winter for them. Are there any lessons to be learnt? Well not really. The plan of action to bring Thomas Cook clients home was already in place and was running smoothly yesterday. What is a blow, though, is that a Great British company founded by a Great Briton has collapsed. The legacy of Thomas Cook, the Great Briton, will be tarnished.