Please visit for confidential help and insolvency advice or email

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Lothian Helicopters in administration (update)

Update  - As of the 1st of June 2011 there has still been no formal notice on the London Gazette that says the company has gone into administration.  In effect the company has just ceased trading and put up a notice on their website saying it had gone into administration which is not actually the case! 

Before we said;

Lothian Helicopters, Scotland’s main helicopter operator, has gone into administration. There is a rather curt message on their website telling people to speak to Pay pal or their credit card company for a refund.

When a company goes into administration the administrator must post a notice on their website. Many do not immediately do so. 
The company or administrators have not issued a statement and as such we do not know who the administrators are.  The company last filed accounts in December 2009 and it had some £1.1m of assets with £936k of liabilities.


  1. Disgusting. taken peoples money knowing full well they were going into Administration.

    We will find out the people responsible for this debacle personally... It's not over trust me.

  2. Just discovered this morning (18 May), after phoning to check weather line and booking phone no, that company are in administration. So much for son's Xmas pressy, and paid by switch, therefore unlikely to get refund!

  3. DISGUSTED. In this day and age someone must have seen this coming. My mums Christmas present down the wonder the country is in the state it;s in. But watch this space the owner of Lothian Helicopters will start up another company!!!!!! Schmuck.

  4. checked with companies house and its not in administration, this means the owner is also lying about that after taking our dosh. Where is our money. I will be contacting Customs and Excise pronto. Be assured.

  5. Dawn O'Donoghue21 May 2011 at 13:59

    I too booked a trip for my husband for Christmas. When he rang to book the flight he was told to ring back in May as there were no flight vacancies at the time.
    He rang back yesterday to find the Company no longer trading. He was advised to contact the bank for hope of a refund.
    Contacting the bank took 3 hours of repeating the story to various people (in various locations all over the world) which then resulted in my debit card being suspended by the bank!
    Eventually, as this is my only card, they relented and have refunded the money into my bank account.
    I'm sad that Lothian chose the unethical route of taking money under false pretences and hope that they are met with the full force of the law for acting in a fraudulent manner.

  6. Just found out Birthday Flight with my son is cancelled due the company going into administration. We did not pay with credit card so i thought I would not be able to claim it back but just read of a new change for visa debit cardholders you can claim from the Bank and then they re-claim it from the company . Gonna give it a try.

  7. I bought my partner a flight for xmas and he sent the flight pack with his preferred dates back in march. After weeks of not hearing anything from Lothian Helicopters I called and said we have no received confirmation or acknowledgement of our flights. Gentleman said he had no record of our details but "took our word for it" that we sent the details and confirmed a flight due out next week! I suspect they received our details and decided not to respond as they knew they were in financial difficulty. He would have known this when I called to confirm everything and yet did not say it would be unlikely they could honour the agreement. Agree with comments above, took funds knowing they would probably not be able to offer a service which could result in legal action as I have read that they had been looking to sell one of the helicopters earlier this year. Very disappointing and now have to go through the bank to try gain funds back and they require info re the administrators which no-one knows. To everyone I hope you receive your money back, I unfortunatley paid by debit card so resounded to the fact I've lost it.

  8. I need to know the administrators in order to get a refund on my debit card,
    but not knowing who they are i dont stand a chance, how can they not tell people who they are!! FRAUDSTERS !!!!!

  9. What annoys me is thsi we had a flight booked in April they phoned and told us to rebook it in May. This was not weather releated it was during the Royal Wedding weekend and they used that as a reason for cancelling.

    My bank is refusing to give me a refund as I paid by debit card and paypal say the same so the message on their webiste is a lie.

    Who are the administrators so I can contact them direct? If they are not in admisitration what course of action do we have?

  10. Lothian Helicopters are not in administration. They are basically stalling to realise the assets in the business. Their owner (Iain Grindlay) has gone underground and is not putting the company into administration as of today.

    We had a voucher with Lothian direct which is effectively null and void.

    I know there are a lot of people who are after him, including two of their suppliers Gift Experience Scotland and Adventure001.

    Good luck everyone!

  11. I also booked a helicopter flight as a birthday present for my Grandad, he and my nan got all the way there to be told by a shop-keeper nearby that they had gone bust. I paid by debit card so i thought there was no chance of a refund but after contacting my bank i found out because i paid with my visa debit card i was covered and ive just recieved a full refund in my bank today :) Hope this helps others.

  12. I went online today to get directions to the venue for our helicopter flights this sunday (fathers day). 2 tickets purchased but company no longer trading. Paid through paypal so hoping they will refund but not looking likely as more than 45 days has passed and too late to open a dispute. Absolutely disgusted and £103 out of pocket!!!!!!!!!

  13. to make people aware you can get your money back even though it was a debit card the bank will your bank for more info.

  14. I also bought a helicopter flight for my husband as part of his xmas present. When he phoned in April to arrange a date the man was very rude stating "you think you'll phone now that your voucher is due to expire". He did not mention then that there was any problems, the only problem was his attitude.
    We tried to phone yesterday to check arrangements only to hear the mail box was full. So we travelled to the venue to be told they were in liquidation. Another four people turned up as well. The owner of the land which was rented out to lothian helicopters stated there was a flight last Saturday, but he was told they were in liquidation and someone else was taking over. ?? I also heard that the owner of Lothian helicopters has recently built himself a £500,000 house somewhere in Dunblane? Who is paying for that....everyone he has scammed and left out of pocket.

  15. Me and my wife bought two trips for her daughter and boyfriend for xmas , who were delighted but are now left very disapointed.

  16. Credit card company refusing to refund money because no administrator has been identified. What do we do next ?

  17. I'm kind of glad that I never got my flight after reading this:

  18. There is a number for Iain Grindley here:

  19. My bank has also advised me no chance of refund unless I know who the administrators Shame on you Capt Grindlay

  20. Just contacted Paypal and they said that you can open a deferred claim. If enough people do this (they didn't say how many) then they will 'look into it'. Small glimmer of hope.

  21. Hi there,

    I have the same sad story as everyone else - booked the flight on my debit card for my brother's graduation and he was due to fly on the 23rd May, until we heard the recorded message of course.

    Paypal also told me the same thing; they will not give a refund unless enough people claim.

    I have therefore made a Facebook group called "Lothian Helicopters Refund" if you would like to join and make a strong case for refunding our hard earned money against an obvious fraudster.

  22. This is the advert for one of their helicopters:

    Note the mobile phone contact number. I *bet* this phone gets answered!!

  23. i too have booked a flight for my mums 70th birthday and i have used lothian before about 3 or 4 times now and met the chief pilot "ian" also a director or something and he seamed straight down the line...but the do say you never can tell , like others i paid through pay pal and by switch and got told to politely bugger ouf. so heres to telling my mum and my brothers the great news.............not.

  24. I too have lost a considerable amount of money - over £200 with Lothian Helicopters.

    Ive just checked here: and it does appear this company could potentially still be trading.

    Does anyone have any ideas of next steps?

    thank you

  25. A form has now been submitted at Companies House to have this company dissolved, presumably against the wishes of the owners.

    It's dated 13th January 2012 and comes into effect three months later on 13th April 2012.

    Reference number DEF6 / SC161624 at Companies House.

    They're being taken to the small claims court as well and should be appearing in Cupar Sheriff Court in Fife on February 7th 2012.


Many thanks for your comments. If you have a private business problem and you want advice give us a call on 0800 9700 539 or email me at If you are a professional advisor with a troubled client, please suggest they visit or contact me as above.

Web Analytics