A HALLIWELL couple’s dream wedding has been left in tatters after Thomas Cook collapsed hours before they were due to fly to Kos.

Layton Roche, 30, and Natalie Wells, 31, have been planning their big day for years and had invited 43 guests to share it with them on the Greek island.

They had a taxi booked to take them to Manchester Airport at 3am on Monday but less than an hour earlier, the news broke that the travel group had entered administration.

"We had a feeling things we’re going to end well at around 9 or 10pm on Sunday," Mr Roche said.

"Everyone's spent so much money and put in so much hard work and all of a sudden we’ve been dealt a massive blow. We've gone from having 43 guests to around 15.

"Natalie's a nervous wreck. Up until around 3pm yesterday it looked like we had no bridesmaids or best man.

"My grandad looked as if he couldn't make it as well, which would have been absolutely soul destroying. He's basically brought me up and my grandma died a few years ago. He's 85 and this was supposed to be a perfect holiday for him with all the family together.

"Fortunately him, the bridesmaids and best man managed to get sorted at the last minute. I'm absolutely over the moon and we're just trying to stay positive now."

Thomas Cook ceased trading with immediate effect in the early hours of Monday, after failing in a final bid to secure a rescue package from creditors.

Although Mr Roche and Miss Wells' holiday is ATOL protected, it could take months for refunds to be processed, leaving the couple and guests in limbo. The couple had to fork out around £4,000 for alternative flights for themselves, one of their children and Miss Wells' mother.

They flew from Birmingham yesterday afternoon and met up with Mr Roche’s dad and ten-year-old daughter, who had flown out a few days ago.

Mr Roche is hopeful that the wedding will still go ahead on Friday.

He added: "Fortunately we still have our wedding package as that was booked through someone else.

"I've been tweeting updates through the whole situation and will carry on doing as I'm not sure what's going to happen once we get there.

"The wedding is on Friday so we're remaining positive."

It is believed more than 3,000 Thomas Cook staff in Greater Manchester have been hit by the collapse of the company.

There are Thomas Cook stores in Bolton town centre, in Manchester Road, at Middlebrook Retail Park and in Farnworth.

Former St Catherine's pupil Jack Humphreys worked abroad as a rep.

Taking to Facebook, the 21-year-old wrote: "This time 48 hours ago I never even thought I’d wake up to this news.

"Three years, five seasons and 100,000s of memories and special moments, Thomas Cook you have been an absolute pleasure.

"You have have such an influence over my life as an adult, words can’t describe the opportunity and journey you have took me on and the massive family you’ve allowed me to feel part of along the way. I’ll be ever grateful.

"Thank you Thomas Cook and thank you to everybody I've met along the way."

If you have booked a holiday with Thomas Cook, visit thomascook.caa.co.uk for information and advice on what to do next.