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Saturday 23 May 2020

British travel businesses fall victim to Covid-19

A leading British travel group has gone out of business, blaming the impact of Covid-19.

Specialist Leisure Group had over 2,500 employees and held over 64,000 bookings, the vast majority of which were coach package holidays, Travel Mole reported.

The group had five companies, including Shearings Holidays which has been operating for 100 years and was 
Europe’s largest coach tour operator.

It also had Wallace Arnold Travel, National Holidays trading as Caledonian Travel and Travel Style, UK Breakaways, Shearings Hotels trading as Bay Hotels and Coach and Country Hotels.

Wallace Arnold Travel acted as an agent for other suppliers and the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) said these bookings will go ahead as normal, except where the bookings have been made with other companies within the Specialist Leisure Group.

John de Vial, ABTA director of membership and financial services, said: "The Specialist Leisure Group included two of the UK's best known coach holiday brands, Shearings and National Holidays, two much loved holiday companies who for many years have provided holidays both at home and overseas to a very loyal group of customers.

"Today is a very sad day for these customers and the thousands of staff who will have lost their jobs.

"The fact that two such well-known brands with a loyal customer base have had to call in administrators is a stark indication of the pressure that the holiday industry is under as a result of the coronavirus pandemic."

All package holiday bookings are financially protected so customers with bookings will receive a full refund, with coach packages protected by the Confederation of Passenger Transport.

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