Family stranded in Turkey as travel firm goes bust

Reporter:

Lois Hough

A DREAM holiday has turned into a nightmare for a Flintshire family after the collapse of a travel firm.

Keith and Helen Rosedale, both 44, and children Jay, 14, and Lois, 19, from Mancot, were enjoying a three-week holiday in the Turkish holiday resort of Fethiye when Sussex-based Aegean Flights went into administration.

They are among 13,000 travellers stranded overseas who are worried about how they are going to get home.

Keith, who works at UPM Shotton, and wife Helen, who works for Molton Brown, Chester, go to Turkey every year with their son Jay, a pupil at Hawarden High School, and daughter Lois, a junior stylist at Inches 2 in Mold.

Lois told the Leader: “I thought it was a joke at first. You see it on the news all the time but you never expect it to happen to you.

“At the moment we have no idea how we’re getting home which is worrying.”

Dad Keith added: “We have been coming to Turkey every year, for years with Aegean.

“They have been an excellent company so it has come as a total surprise.”

Luckily the family are staying in their own villa in Calis Beach so will not have to fork out expensive hotel fees.

Last year Greece and Turkey specialist Goldtrail, based south-west London, went into administration with an estimated 16,000 customers overseas. Lois added:

“This is a worrying pattern, especially as we have a property in the area and rely on flights out here for our friends and family.

“We have already booked next year’s flights with Aegean so we have no idea where we stand with that one either.”

Aegean Flights, which also traded as Holidays 4U, mainly sold cheap package holidays and flights to Turkey.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) says holidaymakers are protected by ATOL from losing money or being stranded abroad and is working around-the-clock to arrange new flights.

ATOL spokesman David Clover said: “There is never a good time for a travel firm to fail. Unfortunately the height of summer is the worst possible time.

“However people who booked ATOL-protected holidays with Holidays 4U and who are currently abroad will be able to complete their holiday or claim a refund from the CAA. We would always advise people to check with their holiday company that they are protected by ATOL.”

Administrators at PricewaterhouseCoopers have been brought in to take over the affairs of the travel firm.

Joint administrator Ian Oakley-Smith said: “The company has suffered because of the difficulties faced by the travel industry during 2010 and 2011 as a result of the economic downturn. The company will cease operating with immediate effect. Regrettably most staff have been made redundant.”

l If you are affected by the collapse of Holidays 4U call the CAA on 08444 933037 or visit www.atol.org.uk

See full story in the Leader

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