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Published on Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Funway Holidays' Melissa Tilling to step down

Funway Holidays' managing director Melissa Tilling is to leave the company a year after it was bought by US travel giant Apple Leisure Group.

Tilling, who has been with the US and Caribbean specialist for 11 years, will step down on August 22.

The company said she would be honoured at an 'appreciation' event at its Bromley office on August 22.

Carla van der Giesen, vice president and general manager of sister brand, London-based Travel Impressions International, will now lead the group's entire operation in Europe, including Funway Holidays, as well as Travel Impressions' Mexico division.

Apple Leisure Group said the change would take effect immediately.

"This is an exciting time for Funway Holidays, as part of the Apple Leisure Group, with new opportunities to develop and grow with Travel Impressions in the UK," said Tilling.

"I have had 11 incredible years working alongside some of the most talented and dedicated people in tour operating but now it's time for something different, perhaps something more philanthropic.

"My life over the last 12 years as a transgender woman in travel has given me so much joy and happiness, now I'd like to give back and 'give forward' applying my business brain to do good," she added.

Tilling joined Funway Holidays at the start of 2008 and held roles including product and commercial director prior to her appointment as managing director in 2017. She is credited with elevating the brand's product, partner relationships, and customer engagement.

An LGBT role model and advocate for diversity in the workplace, the company said 'Tilling departs Funway Holidays with the respect and admiration of her peers'.

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