- Accessible Travel & Leisure (ATL) Shuts Down: Established 21 years ago by its owner, Andy Wright, himself a wheelchair user who suffers from a degenerative illness, the company offered overseas travel packages to those with accessible needs. In announcing the Accessible Travel’s closure, Wright said it was becoming “increasingly difficult” to compete with large operators which had a “virtual monopoly” on accessible accommodation. Wright plans to retire.
Accessible Travel is a member of the Travel Trust Association (TTA) and all bookings are protected. Its office will remain open to answer queries about existing bookings until September 10 after which time the TTA will take over.
Said Wright: “It has become increasingly difficult to provide a high level of service to my clients, while trying to compete with some of the global travel companies, which now have a virtual monopoly on accessible accommodation. Plus, it is now more of a physical challenge for me than it was 20 years ago.”
“ATL is financially sound, but I’ve decided that now is the time to retire from tour operations. Otherwise in the future, the business could have been forced to compromise on standards of service and reliability, something I was not prepared to see happen.”
Neilson Holidays Sold to Private Equity House: Neilson Active Holidays has sold the business to new investors, the London-based private equity firm LDC. The transaction between the investors and the Brighton-based beach club and ski operator was announced by Cavendish Corporate Finance, which advised on the deal.
Neilson operates beach clubs, ski hotels and chalets and 65 yachts, exclusively for its guests who number almost 80,000 every year. In recent years Neilson has successfully capitalized on the increasing demand for activity and wellness holidays at the premium end of the market.
Touchdown Holidays and Travel Industry Services have merged and have renamed the new entity Touchdown | Travel Industry Services. In a statement, the two companies said that they “have joined forces to create a one-stop travel shop” and reassured agents their “mission remains unchanged.”
Director of product and marketing Nasser Gerab said: “We are pleased to announce that Touchdown | Travel Industry Services have joined forces to create a one-stop travel shop, making us the UK’s top holiday operator for travel industry professionals and their friends and family.