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Little comfort for Thomas Cook staff in executives’ select committee answers.

The British Airline Pilots Association says answers given today by former Thomas Cook managers during a hearing of the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) select committee, will have done little to comfort the staff who lost their jobs.

Executives at Thomas Cook were grilled on the reasons behind the company’s collapse as uniformed Thomas Cook employees and members of the public looked on. The hearing kicked off with a recognition that those sitting behind the Thomas Cook Executives are those most affected by the collapse.

Former Chief Executive Peter Fankhauser and former chairman Frank Meysman were asked questions about how they allowed the financial situation of the company to become so dire, it saw the end of the UK’s oldest travel business.
Chief Executive, Peter Fankhauser was also grilled on his high wages and bonuses and those of the other executives, while many other employees are still left out of pocket and out of work – disgracefully not even receiving wages for the work they did in September.

Rachel Reeves MP, leading the inquiry, accused executives of hiding figures to make the company appear it was in better shape than it was. She went on to reprimand them for bringing down the 178 year business which resulted in 9,000 staff losing their jobs and 150,000 holiday makers being left stranded.

BALPA General Secretary, Brian Strutton, said:

“It is right that those at the top of Thomas Cook are held to account for the company’s collapse. Sadly, today, in response to excellent questioning by the committee, we heard lots of obfuscation, and precious little remorse from executives.

“We also place significant blame with the UK Government who could have backed a temporary bridging facility to keep this company going, saving the thousands of jobs which have been lost.

“We continue to support Thomas Cook pilots in finding new work but the scars of this collapse will no doubt run deep with them for many years to come.”