A TRANSPORT company has been honoured with a prestigious award after helping 40,000 stranded holiday makers find their way home.

CMAC Group, based in Accrington, played a hugely important role in bringing tourists who had been left stranded by the collapse of Thomas Cook back home to the UK in 2019.

Known as Operation Matterhorn, the effort has now earned the company the Most Effective Recovery of the Year at the CIR Business Continuity Awards in an industry awards ceremony held on December 9.

CMAC Group chief executive Steve Turner said: “We’re thrilled to have been recognised with such a prestigious award for our work following the Thomas Cook collapse.

“Our strong relationship with the Civil Aviation Authority allowed us to work effectively to execute our pre-arranged repatriation plan and begin to bring thousands of stranded holidaymakers home.

“We have an incredible team and they worked around the clock under intense pressure to ensure the safe travel of passengers and deliver a large-scale recovery at short notice with the highest levels of customer service.

“Over a two-week period, CMAC provided 1,150 coaches and 916 taxis to move 40,000 passengers at a time they needed us most.

“It is a fitting tribute to the relentless hard work and dedication of our brilliant colleagues that we should be honoured in this way.”

Lancashire Telegraph: CMAC Group: Company leaders Peter Slater, Daniel Kennedy, Neil Atkins, Steve Turner and David Barrow CMAC Group: Company leaders Peter Slater, Daniel Kennedy, Neil Atkins, Steve Turner and David Barrow

The management team at CMAC

Operation Matterhorn began after airline giant Thomas Cook collapsed on September 23, 2019, sparking the UK’s biggest ever airlift.

In total, more than 150,000 people needed to be brought back to the UK from across the world in just a two-week period.

Civil Aviation Authority CEO Richard Moriarty said: “After working with CMAC over the Monarch Airlines repatriation exercise in 2017, the CAA did not hesitate about using the company again last year to assist with the Thomas Cook repatriation exercise.”

He added: “CMAC again rose to the challenge and were an essential and valued member of the team. The professionalism of the company and its staff was as high as before.”

“All involved responded promptly to changing needs and made sure that Thomas Cook clients were treated with care and sensitivity at a very stressful time for them.”

To find out more, visit: https://www.cmacgroup.co.uk/.