Scottish airline Highland Airways has been placed in administration.
March 25: Scottish airline Highland Airways has been placed in administration, reports the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). Administrator PricewaterhouseCoopers was called in during the evening of March 24 and all flights have been cancelled, although the website is still ‘live’ to take bookings.
The Inverness-based airline provided scheduled services from Inverness to the Scottish Western Isles and Cardiff and Anglesey. The CAA advises travellers booked to fly with the airline to make alternative arrangements as the airline is not protected by the ATOL scheme. If passengers paid by credit card or debit card they may be protected by Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 or by the card issuer rules. If passengers booked their ticket through a travel agent they should speak to the agent and check travel insurance policy.
The BBC reports that the airline’s problems were highlighted at the start of the year after severe weather led to cancelled flights. Bruce Cartwright, joint administrator and head of business recovery services at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in Scotland, said “The company had encountered trading difficulties including the loss of certain contracts. As a result they were in discussion with a number of parties over a period of time with a view to developing a new and viable operating model. The directors have now concluded that the option of maintaining operations while introducing a new investor is no longer feasible.
“It is inevitable that there will be a substantial number of redundancies but we will endeavour where feasible to assist the work force in securing employment with new service providers.”
Highland Airways operated a fleet of nine aircraft and undertook aerial work, newspaper delivery to Scottish islands, corporate staff shuttles and air charter movements.