ABTA is considering another shake-up of its councils to take account of the sweeping changes in the travel industry over the last 12 months.

A review is under way into the make-up of both the Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Councils to ensure they represent a balanced view of the industry.

The move comes a year after the association restructured its councils to include a broader mix of agents and operators (Travel Weekly Jan 21 1998).

Council membership is split into four bands, A-D which represent a cross-section of large and small companies. But ABTA believes that since the buying frenzy last year, the councils could now be imbalanced.

ABTA chief executive Ian Reynolds said: “There could be a case where one band has a number of council representatives out of line with the number of members in that band. It is important ABTA reflects the changes in the industry.”

However, some feel there should be more fundamental changes to ABTA’s committee structure, including the merging or even scrapping of both TAC and TOC.

Industry sources say a 20-strong board could replace both councils – which discuss the same issues – and help streamline decision making.

However, it is felt that grass roots agents in particular would fiercely oppose such radical changes. Reynolds said there were no plans to alter the committee structure.