It began on the other side of the world – now an Aussie-based travel firm has made it to the heart of York.
Flight Centre is planning to open a branch next to Marks & Spencer on Parliament Street.
At a time when so much of the travel trade has gone online, Flight Centre has bucked the trend. It now has more than 80 high street locations in the UK, and 1,300 worldwide.
The nearest one to York at present is on Briggate in Leeds.
Workers are now refitting the shop, a Grade II building at 39 Parliament Street. It used to be Monsoon Children but has been empty for some time.
Flight Centre have applied to City of York Council for permission to modernise the shopfront with red and white signs.
A spokeswoman for Flight Centre told YorkMix:
The shop is on track to open on September 5 and six new jobs are being created.
There will be special deals to mark the opening however these haven’t been confirmed yet.
Team of travel experts
The first store opened in Sydney, Australia in 1982. Since then it has grown into one of the world’s largest and most successful independent travel retailers.
Its team of travel experts “will offer you the best advice and most competitive travel deals around with the convenience of speaking to someone face-to-face”.
Flight Centre stores “specialise in tailor making long-haul holidays to our key destinations including Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Asia and the United States”.
The arrival of the travel company ends speculation that Parliament Street was about to get its first pub for more than 50 years.
Then, the owners of the building – Northern Retail Consortium Ltd – argued that they had marketed as a shop since 2010 without finding a suitable tenant.
They wanted to be able to market it as a potential bar or restaurant as well. That application was withdrawn in May.
Parliament Street lost its last pub when the Clock Inn – found two doors further down from number 39 – closed in 1966.