Brief History of Thomas Cook A330 G-MLJL

Posted by Paulius Aganauskas on

Thomas Cook Airlines Limited was a British airline based in Manchester, England. It was founded in 2007 from the merger of Thomas Cook Group and MyTravel Group, and was part of the Thomas Cook Group Airlines. The airline served leisure destinations worldwide from its main bases at Manchester Airport and Gatwick Airport on a scheduled and charter basis.

Thomas Cook Airbus A330 G-MLJL in British Airtours Colours

(Photo Credit Ken Fielding)

Airbus A330 with manufacture serial number (MSN) 254 took off to the skies on April the 6th, 1999 for the first time (with original registration of F-WWKT). Few months later (June 1999) it was delivered to British Airtours and registered under new registration of G-MLJL. Later, British Airtours became MyTravel Airways and the aircraft A330 with MSN 254 was flying in MyTravel livery for the next 8 years.

Thomas Cook Airlines A330 G-MLJL in MyTravel Livery

(Photo Credit Aero Icarus)

In 2007 MyTravel Airline merged with Thomas Cook and the aircraft , together with other A330 became part of Thomas Cook fleet and it was repainted in Thomas Cook Livery. For a brief period of time this particular aircraft was flying for Garuda Indonesia Airlines, however after 2 months it was returned back to the real owner - Thomas Cook Airlines. 

Over 22 years history of flying, this aircraft has been involved in 2 serious incidents which lead to the CAA investigations. On August 28th, 2012 Thomas Cook Airbus A330-200, registration G-MLJL performing flight MT-134 from London Gatwick,EN (UK) to Holguin (Cuba), was enroute at FL390 over the Atlantic Ocean at about N40 W40 nearly 3 hours into the crossing when the crew decided to turn around and return to London Gatwick reporting they were losing hydraulic fluid. On the way back the crew reported the failure of the hydraulic system. The aircraft landed safely on Gatwick's runway 26L about 4 hours after turning around and about 8 hours after departure.

And on August 2nd, 2019 Thomas Cook Airbus A330-200, registration G-MLJL performing flight MT-2915 from Varadero (Cuba) to Manchester (UK) with 320 passengers and 11 crew, was en-route at FL370 over the Atlantic Ocean, while avoiding observed weather radar returns the aircraft experienced unexpected turbulence. Although the encounter only lasted for approximately 90 seconds, the turbulence was so severe that two cabin crew members received injuries, one of which was later classified as ‘serious’. After consulting with Medlink the aircraft commander elected to continue to destination.

Thomas Cook A330 G-MLJL in latest livery

On 23rd of September 2019 A330 has marked end of the era of Thomas Cook Airlines by performing the very last flight from Orlando, USA to Manchester,  where the aircraft was retired and broken down.

Now you have a chance of owning a piece of real British Aviation History - a piece of very last Thomas Cook Airlines Aircraft!

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