Job losses as Thomas Cook admits it will close Ferryquay Street branch

Thomas Cook has confirmed it will close its Ferryquay Street branch in Derry.
Thomas Cook has confirmed it will close its Ferryquay Street branch in Derry.

Travel agency, Thomas Cook, has confirmed that it is to close its Ferryquay Street branch in Derry.

However, the Thomas Cook branch in Foyleside Shopping Centre will remain open.

The ‘Journal’ understands staff at both stores found out their jobs were officially at risk when they received letters last week.

A spokesperson for Thomas Cook UK and Ireland told the ‘Journal’ that factors leading to the decision to close the Ferryquay Street branch included a lack of profit.

“We can confirm that we have today announced plans to close our store at 34 Ferryquay Street, Derry on a number of factors including lease expiry and profitability,” said the spokesperson.

“Accordingly, we have advised colleagues of our intention to consolidate our presence in Derry to our other store located nearby, where we will continue to offer our customers the very best levels of quality and service on the high street.

“Our people have some of the very best knowledge, experience and expertise in travel, and we are dedicated to retaining as many members of staff as possible. Individual consultation has commenced with impacted employees,” added the spokesperson.

Kathryn Darbandi, Director of Retail and Customer Experience at Thomas Cook UK and Ireland, said although the decision to close the store was the right one for the business, it was “never easy”.

“Making decisions that affect our colleagues is never easy, but this is the right decision for Thomas Cook UK and Ireland and its customers.

“We’ve made a commitment to improve the profitability of the UK business and today’s announcement is part of this, but what is also key to these proposed changes is the improved service level that will result for our customers. Our high street stores are a popular way for them to book, and they can rest assured that we are dedicated to meeting their needs following these proposed closures in other Thomas Cook and the Co-operative Travel premises close by.”

Ms. Darbandi said Thomas Cook management would be working closely with those affected by the closure over the coming weeks.

“I’d like to thank our colleagues for the commitment they have made to ensuring that Thomas Cook remains the most popular travel retailer on the high street, and our management team will be working closely with them over the coming weeks as they enter consultation.”