Silverjet, the business-class-only airline flying from Luton, called in the receivers yesterday.
This Londonista tried Silverjet and liked the whole feel of it. Nothing showy - it felt very 1970s with everything in steely-grey. It was one of the few airlines that had almost unerringly positive reviews from a set of increasingly highly-loyal passengers, and some great staff. In a competitive climate, it saw off a tough challenge from rivals EOS and Maxjet, whose own demise seemed to leave Silverjet an open field and the chance to lead the market.
Unfortunately, the company has arrived at its final destination. The high price of aviation fuel may have been the last straw as it failed to find enough finance to back the firm. Yesterday, on a flight from Dubai back to London, the captain had the displeasure of having to announce to passengers and crew that the airline had gone bust. One passenger's account of this below:
"The hostesses all lined up, they were howling, some of the passengers were in tears. The captain also announced that the hostesses had not been paid for over a month, and they were doing this for free. When we landed, the receivers came on board and took possession of the plane."
There's an outside chance of new investors coming forward, but we hold little hope that air travel will be 'sivilised' in quite the same way again. RIP Silverjet.
Image from gorgeoux's Flickrstream