Thomas Cook pilots threaten 12-hour strike over pay row

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Frustrated Thomas Cook pilots are planning to stage a 12-hour strike over a pay dispute.

The British Airline Pilots' Association (Balpa) announced it had authorised a strike by Thomas Cook Airlines pilots following a ballot in which 91% voted to take action in a dispute over their 2017 pay talks.

The industrial action will take place on September 8 between 3am and 3pm.

The dispute follows nearly eight months of negotiations over a pay rise that was due in April.

Thomas Cook has offered a 1.5% rise and Balpa has asked for at least the inflation rate, plus catching up with other comparable airlines and better travel facilities for pilots.

Two days of talks have taken place at Acas but with no progress so far.

Balpa general secretary Brian Strutton, said: "Disrupting people's travel plans is the last thing pilots want to do and we very much regret taking this step.

"However, our members are frustrated that after many months of negotiations we still do not have a decent pay offer on the table and they have said loud and clear, 'Enough is enough'.

"That is why Balpa has authorised a strike to take place on 8th September.

"In the meantime I will continue trying to negotiate with Thomas Cook to achieve an outcome that will be acceptable to pilots."

A Thomas Cook spokesman said: "Our priority is to minimise disruption to our customers' holidays.

"We have contingency plans in place which mean we are confident we will be able to operate all of our flights during the planned strike.

"We are working hard with Balpa's representatives to find a way forward."