OPERATORS will not have their own breakaway council in the new streamlined ABTA after a Newman Street meeting ruled it would be too bureaucratic.

Instead, companies will hold ad hoc meetings only when issues arise.

Tour Operators’ Council chairman John Bond said members feared it would slow up the system – exactly what the shake-up is designed toprevent.

“Operators are happy to hold impromptu forums to discuss topics when the need arises,” said Bond. “They did not feel there was any need to have set meetings four or five times a year.”

He added the blueprint was given broad backing by the operators.

Meanwhile, non-supporters of the blueprint fear it could be voted through even if it does not obtain the required 75% majority.

They say a poll vote could be taken which will be based on subscriptions and turnover.

“Because of the sheer size of the larger players, if they support it, it will get through regardless of what anyone else thinks,” said oneoperator.

ABTA admitted a poll vote could be held but said it would still need the backing of a cross-section of members.

In a separate move, chief executive Ian Reynolds said the association will look to improve communication with operator members by employing a liaison officer.