Widow 'stressed and anxious' after Thomas Cook collapses while she is on holiday to scatter late husband's ashes - The Leamington Observer

Widow 'stressed and anxious' after Thomas Cook collapses while she is on holiday to scatter late husband's ashes

Leamington Editorial 23rd Sep, 2019   0

A WIDOW has been left ‘stressed and anxious’ after Thomas Cook collapsed while she was in Majorca to scatter her late husband’s ashes.

Former Warwick community nurse Liz Sweeney Evans travelled with friends to Palmanova on Thursday and planned to spend a week relaxing and celebrating her husband Dave’s life in his favourite town.

But the day after scattering his ashes in the sea Liz and her friends woke to the news the travel firm had gone bust and their plans hung in the balance.

It is the latest blow in a traumatic year for Liz, whose husband died from cancer in July – just nine weeks after the pair moved to New Zealand from Willenhall in Coventry.

She said: “With Dave dying this was a holiday to celebrate his life and scatter his ashes. I’m already vulnerable and this is just added anxiety.

“We were away for a week and have been looking at the website and our flight isn’t there yet. It’s added anxiety and stress that I don’t need.”

When the pair moved to New Zealand they saved some £10,000 so they could fly to Madrid and watch their beloved Liverpool win the Champions League Final.

But instead the money was used to pay for Dave’s funeral.

Throughout his cancer battle Dave – a former project worker at Binswood Lodge supported housing in Leamington – was sent messages of support from Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, former star Steven Gerrard, current captain Jordan Henderson.

After his death Liz said she hoped to start a charity to help those with a terminal illness tick a sporting event off their bucket list.

And when she finally gets a flight out of Majorca she plans to return to Coventry until February, when she will go back to New Zealand.

Liz added: “As Dave loved Palmanova this was the ideal place to come and remember him.

“We are just worried if we are delayed here as my friends have jobs to go to.

“I’m just thinking of all those people who will have lost their jobs, people who have booked their holidays, people who have taken a year to save for their holiday and now can’t go. It’s so sad.”

The collapse of the 178-year-old holiday firm today (Monday) has seen flights and holidays cancelled and more than 22,000 jobs at risk, including 9,000 in the UK.

It has triggered the biggest peacetime repatriation in UK history with 150,000 Brits needing to be brought home. They will be flown on free flights or put on another airline at no cost.

Transport secretary Grant Shapp said: “Thomas Cook’s collapse is very sad news for staff and holidaymakers.

“Government and the UK Civil Aviation Authority is working round the clock to help people. Our contingency planning has helped acquire planes from across the world – some from as far away as Malaysia – and we have put hundreds of people in call centres and at airports.

“But the task is enormous, the biggest peacetime repatriation in UK history. So there are bound to be problems and delays. Please try to be understanding with the staff who are trying to assist in what is likely to be a very difficult time for them as well.”

Thomas Cook high street branches across Coventry and Warwickshire were also all closed today.

Anyone booked to travel with Thomas Cook should visit www.thomascook.caa.co.uk or call 0300 303 2800 from within the UK or +44 1753 330330 from overseas for more.

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