Thomas Cook: The Rise and Fall of Britain’s Oldest Travel Agent – C4

In Thomas Cook: The Rise and Fall of Britain’s Oldest Travel Agent we discover how the oldest and one of the most respected names in travel suddenly went bust

Thomas Cook: The Rise and Fall of Britain’s Oldest Travel Agent aims to get behind the headlines dominating news bulletins a couple of weeks ago.

Now that the dust has settled, and thanks to the ATOL scheme, which protects travellers against just such a calamity, it’s time for questions to be asked about the collapse of this once-mighty company.

In fact it was so integral to life in the UK that it used to be nationalised – older readers will remember buying Thomas Cook Travellers Cheques and knowing that they could travel secure in the knowledge that their money was safe.

Thomas Cook passengers in Palma airport, Spain

25 September 2019, Spain, Palma: Passengers hoping to get home

Because when Thomas Cook went into compulsory liquidation last month, it brought to an end an illustrious history stretching all the way back to 1841.

This timely programme looks at how a company started by a strict Baptist cabinet-maker to transport Leiciester teetotallers to a temperance meeting in Loughborough (cost: one shilling each) went on to become a fixture on almost every high street.

But, some suggest, it was staying on the high street as the world went online that had a hand in the downfall of the world’s oldest travel brand.

TV Times rating: ****

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