Cosmos sales and distribution director Andy Washington has announced his resignation from the tour operator.

He said he has a new job lined up within the travel trade. However, he is unable to name the new company until next week and is also still negotiating the exact date as to when he will quit Cosmos.

Washington added: “It will be a good challenge but it is a shame to be leaving Cosmos now that we are in such a strong business position. I’m like Eric Cantona and quitting while we’re at the top.”

Washington joined Cosmos in 2001 and was appointed to his current role in 2004 when he took responsibility for the Cosmos, Avro, and Cosmos Tourama brands.

Cosmos group tour operations managing director Paul Jolliffe said: “Andy has been integral to the growth of sales for all brands through the travel trade and he leaves behind a very experienced and dedicated team that will take these successes forward with our trade partners.

“We wish Andy well for the future and thank him for his tremendous efforts and loyalty to the business.”

Cosmos product and commercial director Stuart Jackson will take over trade relations for the operator’s group tour operations in Washington’s absence while a restructure of the sales and distribution department is expected shortly.