Travel agent brothers get away from work

Tim and Steve Allerston sold Holiday Travel to Hays Travel last year and retired earlier this month. Picture by Paul Atkinson
Tim and Steve Allerston sold Holiday Travel to Hays Travel last year and retired earlier this month. Picture by Paul Atkinson

Two brothers who have booked thousands of holidays for customers in Bridlington are looking forward to travelling themselves in their retirement.

Steve and Tim Allerston have stepped down from Holiday Travel in Promenade, selling the business to a national company last year after decades of helping people find their dream getaway.

Steve, who was manager of the agency, said: “After 43 years of working constantly, it will be a luxury to not listen to the alarm clock going off at 7am.

“I am lucky enough to be able to retire and take the pressure off.”

He became a travel agent after following in the footsteps of his father, Derek.

“Holiday Travel has been around in Bridlington for such a long time,” he said.

“My father started the business. He had two different shops in West Street. He started booking caravans for people because he had six caravans himself at Reighton Sands.

“Then he got involved with holiday flats and letting flats and then people started asking if he could book overseas holidays with them.

“At 18 I was going to go to polytechnic, but my father had the business and a few years later my brother Tim got involved.

After a brief spell working in Hull to enable the Bridlongton business to become ABTA members, the Promenade shop opened in the mid-1980s .

“It’s like all jobs, it’s probably tougher than you realise because it is such a competitive environment and we saw the internet come along.

“However, Tim and I quadrupled the business in the time we ran it. The success brought its pressures and we were always busy, but over the years we have seen lots of other travel agencies come and go in Bridlington.

“We are local lads, both born in Bridlington, and we always tried to have a caring attitude to customers and the people who worked for us had to fit into the same mould.

“I think people are returning to travel agents now after various internet scams and the failure of airlines like Monarch.”

Steve’s work has seen him travel to California, Australia, New Zealand and the Caribbean on trips, so he could pass on advice to holidaymakers.

Both he and Tim love Puerto Pollensa in the north of Majorca as something of a hidden gem and are hoping to travel more in their retirement.

“We are very lucky that we have the Mediterranean only a few hours away, not just for the beaches and the Greek islands, but for great cities like Rome, Barcelona and Prague.”

This time last year, Holiday Travel was sold to Hays Travel, a national chain, but the brothers were asked to stay on for 12 months to ensure a smooth transition. Jonathan Cresswell, who worked for Steve and Tim for more than a decade, is now manager of the Bridlington shop.