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Monarch collapse leaves 110,000 holidaymakers stranded

“That is why I have immediately ordered the country’s biggest ever peacetime repatriation to fly about 110,000 passengers who could otherwise have been left stranded abroad.”

But the Unite union hit back, saying ministers rebuffed requests by Monarch — Britain’s tenth largest airline according to Euromonitor International — to provide a bridging loan.

“Monarch’s workforce has worked tirelessly and loyally, with great sacrifice, to try and turn the airline around in the last year,” said Unite official, Oliver Richardson.

“Their hard work has been undone by a government seemingly content to … allow one of the UK’s oldest airlines go into administration.”

– ‘Ryanair’s gain ‘

Affected parties used social media to get their messages across, mirroring a situation a week ago when Ryanair cancelled thousands of flights as it battles to overcome a shortage of pilots.

“Monarch customers in the UK: don’t go to the airport. There will be no more Monarch flights,” the budget carrier said on Twitter.

The BBC reported that Monarch staff cleared their desks Monday at their Luton headquarters after meeting with administrators.

Meanwhile customer Holly-Rae Copeland‏ tweeted: “Just when you think you’ve avoided Ryanair’s flight cancellations, #monarchairlines go into administration on the day of your flight.”

KPMG partner and joint administrator, Blair Nimmo, said “mounting cost pressures and increasingly competitive market conditions in the European short-haul market have contributed to the Monarch Group experiencing a sustained period of trading losses”.

Monarch’s collapse was meanwhile “good news” for rival airlines, said ETX Capital analyst, Neil Wilson.

“Shares in Ryanair and EasyJet both rose… as the market reacted to the news of the demise of Monarch after 50 years in business,” Wilson said.

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