All Leisure Holidays stops trading
Cruise company All Leisure Holidays has stopped trading with immediate effect and called in administrators, leaving hundreds of holidaymakers stranded.
The shutdown of the Atol-protected firm affects cruise lines Swan Hellenic and Voyages of Discovery, and has resulted in nearly 150 people losing their jobs.
The Civil Aviation Authority will help to repatriate the 400 people who are currently abroad, but future bookings for 13,000 others have been cancelled.
All holidaymakers will receive refunds.
Administrators Grant Thornton will manage the affairs of All Leisure Holidays, along with three other travel companies based at a site in Market Harborough.
A total of 250 people worked there, with 50 employed by All Leisure Holidays. All 50 have been made redundant along with virtually all of the company's 100 maritime staff.
The other 200 workers at the Market Harborough site have kept their jobs after the other firms were sold to a subsidiary of Canadian tour operator G Adventures.
Grant Thornton's Eddie Williams said: "Whilst I am extremely pleased to have concluded a sale of the business which safeguards the holidays and bookings for over 13,500 tours and passengers and preserves 200 jobs, I am very disappointed that we have no alternative other than to close the remaining ALH operations.
"The cruise operations have been significantly loss-making over a number of years and the ongoing cost of funding these operations by the tours operations has created significant cash issues for the entire group, which has ultimately led to the administration of all businesses."
Andy Cohen, head of Atol at the CAA, said: "We understand this will be concerning news for anyone who has booked to travel with the company.
"However, the Atol scheme exists for exactly this kind of situation and we are making immediate arrangements so all Atol-protected customers can claim full refunds as quickly as possible."