Vertical Systems MD one of two new appointees to Abta Lifeline board

Vertical Systems MD one of two new appointees to Abta Lifeline board

Chris North joins Celebrity Cruises’ Claire Stirrup as a trustee of the industry charity

Abta LifeLine has appointed Celebrity Cruises’ Claire Stirrup and Vertical Systems’ Chris North to its board.

The two new trustees have taken up their positions on the board with immediate effect. The board is made up of eight people in total, including the new trustees, from across the travel industry

Stirrup, sales director UK & Ireland, will be the first cruise representative to sit on the charity’s board. She is a committed supporter of the charity and was the driving force behind the Celebrity Loves Agents campaign in January which raised £10,000 for Abta LifeLine.

She said: “I am honoured to join the board. Latterly, in my role as sales director at Celebrity Cruises, I have seen the valuable contribution Abta Lifeline makes to our industry and to those experiencing significant hardship.

“Travel continues to face challenges, and Abta LifeLine provides support for those who need it most. Those are the very same people who we rely on as businesses for their expertise and support. I am looking forward to giving something back to this industry that has been my home for the last 35 years.”

The appointment of North, managing director of Vertical Systems, will build on his existing relationship with Abta LifeLine as a mental health champion. He is keen to raise the profile of the support provided by the charity to the travel community and help it reach its fundraising goals.

He said: “I’m delighted to be joining the board at Abta LifeLine. I’ve spent the past 26 years within the travel industry and must say what a brilliant industry it is! The beating heart our industry is the amazing people. I hope I can give something back, especially to those in need of some help.”

Abta LifeLine chair Derek Jones, chief executive of Kuoni parent Der Touristik UK, welcomed the new appointments.

He said: “Having two experienced players like Claire and Chris with us will bring a new dynamic to the board of trustees and I know their commitment will bring fresh ideas and opportunities.

“I couldn’t be prouder of the work we’ve been doing to support our colleagues in the travel industry through the most difficult period any of us have ever known. We’ve got more to do and I’m looking forward to having Claire and Chris alongside us to support Trudie and the team achieve their fundraising goals and continue to get help to those who need it.”