Monarch: the king of all falls

02 Oct 2017

Monarch, has announced the end of its reign as the fifth largest airline in the UK. In the early hours of this morning it entered administration, leaving a trail of destruction with 2,000 job losses, and the cancellation of 300,000 flights to rival Ryanair’s on-going fiasco.

Where did it all go so wrong?

Monarch was founded in 1968 and grew rapidly to become an all-jet fleet by 1976. By 1981, Monarch was flying a million passengers to several destinations in Europe from popular UK airports, such as Manchester, Leeds-Bradford, Gatwick and its Luton HQ.

The airline adopted the low-cost model in 2004 to keep pace with rivals EasyJet, but this was the beginning of its demise. Flights at some destinations were dropped due to low demand and leased planes were quickly returned.

Despite a small profit in 2010 of £1.4million, it reported a £45 million loss in the financial year ending 31 October 2011 as a result of high fuel prices. A higher terrorism threat has also proved to be difficult for trading conditions; Egypt and Turkey provided a key chunk of revenue for the airline and subsequent terror attacks left the airline deprived from the resulting weaker demand. The Brexit vote seemingly provided the final nail in the coffin, as the weak pound impacted on handling charges. Last year, Monarch suffered a £291 million loss and as at 04.00am BST on 2 October 2017, the airline announced its collapse.

Customers on holiday at the moment should not fear, however, as in a statement seemingly designed to rival Churchill and stir up thoughts of D-Day war efforts,  the Transport Secretary  Chris Grayling was keen to tell us of the record-breaking size of the repatriation laid on by the UK government . 

This tale does make you wonder how Ryanair can haemorrhage money though ‘self-foot shooting ‘ and survive (assuming it does). On the plus side, perhaps for Ryanair Monarch represents the ‘organ donor’ of pilots it didn’t know it was waiting for.

Further reading

What’s the state of Employment Status?

Blog, News & PR
Rebecca Thornley-Gibson highlights the challenges faced by businesses who struggle to determine employment status and the impact this has on innovative operating models
Read more Read

Employer's question: how to effectively deal with stress related sickness in lockdown

There are a variety of contributing factors caused by the pandemic that have seen a rise in stress related claims at work, but how can employers deal with this more effectively?
Read more Read

Use of statutory demand to make company insolvent suspended until June

Blog, Legal Updates
Cheraine Williams looks at more temporary Covid-driven measures that will protect businesses and tenants from possible legal action
Read more Read

New guidance issued for valuation of flats and investigating fire safety

Blog, Legal Updates
Cheraine Williams looks a the current situation facing leaseholders looking to sell or re-finance their property; will new guidance provide clarity?
Read more Read
  • Brighton Office

    1 Jubilee Street


    East Sussex

    BN1 1GE

  • Gatwick Office

    Griffin House

    135 High Street


    West Sussex

    RH10 1DQ

  • Guildford Office

    Wonersh House

    The Guildway

    Old Portsmouth Road



    GU3 1LR

  • Horsham Office

    Ridgeland House

    15 Carfax


    West Sussex

    RH12 1DY

  • London Office

    6 New Street Square

    New Fetter Lane


    EC4A 3BF

  • Get in touch