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UPDATED: New blow to high street as Thomas Cook axes third of branches
4:00am Thursday 7th March 2013 in News
DORSET branches of Thomas Cook have had their futures thrown into doubt after the firm confirmed plans to close a third of its travel agencies.
The job losses – 16 per cent of its 15,500 workforce in the UK and Ireland – will affect workers cross its retail network as well as administration and back-office staff.
There are three branches of the chain locally, in Old Christchurch Road, Bournemouth, High Street, Wimborne, and Kingland Road, Poole.
It is not yet known if any of the branches are set to be affected by the cuts.
The company will confirm which stores are due to be closed later this week.
When visited by the Daily Echo, staff at the Dorset branches did not want to comment.
Jobs at head offices in Peterborough and Preston are at risk, while the Accrington office is likely to be closed, with the loss of 100 jobs. The Transport Salaried Staffs Association, which represents employees, said it was “shocked and angry” at the scale of the job losses.
General secretary Manuel Cortes said: “This constant policy of slash and burn, with the axing of one in four stores and the loss of jobs, is simply self-defeating.
“The company needs new products if it is to come to terms with the age of the internet and prosper in the 21st century.”
Thomas Cook is the world’s oldest travel company, formed by its namesake, a cabinet maker, in 1941.
It posted annual losses of £590 million in November despite having in excess of 23 million customers last year.
The travel company is just the latest high street chain to announce difficulties, with 13 going bust in the past year.
- Republic – February 13 2013
- Blockbuster UK - January 16 2013
- HMV – January 15 2013
- Jessops – January 9 2013
- Comet – November 2 2012
- JJB Sports – September 24 2012
- Clinton Cards – May 9 2012
- Aquascutum - April 17 2012
- Game Group – March 21 2012
- Peacocks – January 18 2012
- Pumpkin Patch – January 19 2012
- Past Times – January 16 2012
- Blacks Leisure – January 9 2012