More than 350 Airside jobs could be lost at Manchester Airport after a ground services firm announced it was pulling out due to the collapse of holiday firm Thomas Cook.
The ground services company Aviator employs 351 people involved in, baggage, cargo handling and as well as various other positions.
More than 3,000 jobs were lost at Manchester Airport when Thomas Cook went bust last month. Union bosses describing the situation as a ‘devastating blow for staff and the local economy’.
Talks are now taking place with staff to explore the possibility of a transfer of some jobs to other companies operating at the airport.
“It’s very important from our point of view that the Thomas Cook slots at the airport are filled as quickly as possible. Because the work should come back and the people who have lost their jobs should be in prime position to fill those roles.” said Unite regional officer Mike Gaskell.
“Aviator staff are dedicated, they’ve got good experience, they’ve got a good reputation. We are doing all we can to push that process forward.”
Gary Beswick, an Aviator employee and Unite rep, said the news had come as a shock to staff.
He added: “We thought we were doing pretty well. Most of the staff were very upset. Most of them have been there from the start.”
Mike Gaskell went on to add, “We knew there would be a second wave and even a third wave of redundancies.
“But we hope there are no other job losses and that the blow can be absorbed by companies, but we are anticipating further bad news in the weeks and months to come.”
A spokesperson for Aviator said: “Today Aviator is announcing that it regrettably anticipates ceasing all operations at Manchester airport. Aviator’s likely last day of service to customers in Manchester will be Tuesday, October 22.
“This is another unfortunate outcome stemming from Thomas Cook’s recent liquidation. Thomas Cook was our largest customer, accounted for approximately 70% of our service in Manchester and despite our efforts over the past two weeks, we have concluded that we cannot operate as a viable business supporting only our remaining customers.