Rainy weather gives Thomas Cook a much-needed boost

Benalmadena Beach in Spain Credit: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Britons looking to escape to the sun after weeks of miserable weather have lifted holiday bookings at beleaguered travel firm Thomas Cook.

The UK's second biggest travel company said its summer programme was now 88 percent sold after a sales boost in recent weeks following a subdued April and May.

Cumulative bookings in the UK were still down one percent on last year at the end of last month.

The group reported an underlying operating loss of £26.5 million in the three months to June 30th due to tough trading conditions and the cost of acquisitions.