Industry entrepreneur Clive Jacobs has reached the first stage in launching a legal battle against the government, after receiving more than £25,000 from across the travel industry in three days.
Jacobs, owner of Jacobs Media Group, is hoping to initiate a legal challenge on behalf of the travel industry, demanding the government reveal the methodology and data behind its decisions to place countries on the traffic light system. If it can be proved decisions were based on politics rather than data, he believes compensation will be owed to the industry
Jacobs told TTG the idea was borne from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “defiance against the government”, after the British composer and theatre impresario threatened legal action if he wasn’t able to open theatres on 21 June.
“There’s no recognition of the fact it is a industry that employs more than a million people. Peoples’ lives are on the line,” Jacobs said.
“Things are at such a critical junction that the only way to tackle this is by using a proper mechanism that will hold the government to account.
“They always like to say they are driven by the data - yet when it comes to our industry they seem to be driven more by politics than data. They are looking to scapegoat and demonise this industry.”
Jacobs said he was anxious about “giving people false hope” and stressed this was just the first stage of a potential case. “We reached the first hurdle very quickly – we now have £26,000 so we have enough to instruct lawyers to identify if this is a case and if it has a chance of success.
“If they can prove the decision making was based on politics rather than data then we want the government to offer compensation to the industry.”
Jacobs said it would likely “take a few weeks” for lawyers to ascertain the strength of the case, but if they agreed then he would be seeking to raise around £200,000.
“I don’t want to give people false hope. I want to be in a position where we can properly hold the government to account over their decision-making. The aim is to be a benefit to the industry.”
Daniel Pearce, CEO of TTG Media said: "TTG Media is proud to raise the profile and awareness of anyone working to champion this industry alongside our own #SaveTravel and #OneTravelIndustry campaigning over the last 15 months.
"We’re pleased to support Clive Jacobs in his efforts to hold the government to account. We are all in this together as an industry and it is important we remain united in our drive to achieve greater support for this industry.
It comes as a coalition of airlines and airports are set to launch a legal challenge against the UK government over its traffic light system, it has been reported.
Ryanair chief Michael O’Leary has said the budget carrier would get behind an effort by Manchester Airports Group (MAG) to encourage the government to make the system more transparent.
To donate to Clive Jacobs’ Crowdfunder campaign click here.