BTN Europe presents an overview of business travel and MICE predictions for this year
ExCeL London - 22-23 June 2021
Steve Murray, the former head of Focus operations at the Advantage Travel Partnership, passed away this week after losing his battle with cancer. He worked in the business until 2017 and had served the organisation for 15 years. “We know many of you will have your own memories of Steve, but we wanted to share a tribute to him of our own,” says a message from Advantage to its members and shared with BTN Europe.
“After receiving permission from Steve's family, we felt there would be no one better to write a tribute and obituary for Steve than Ken McLeod. “Many of you know Ken, who is a former Advantage director, board director and life-long friend of Advantage. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this time.”
Steve MurrayA tribute from Ken McLeod My friend and former colleague Steve Murray passed away on Monday 9 November following a long battle with cancer. Steve was well known in the business travel community, having joined Advantage Travel Partnership in 2003, and managed the Focus Group division for 14 years. Steve loved his job as it kept him in the forefront of daily issues in the travel world, but it was the camaraderie and friendship in his work that he enjoyed as much as anything, which allowed him to build a large network of colleagues that understood his passion for the job. His role allowed him to indulge in three of his favourite interests, with trips to the Formula 1 Grand Prix, golfing on a variety of courses both here and abroad, and his great joy at playing a game of football on the hallowed ground of his beloved Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. I worked with Steve for over ten years in Advantage, and we would have animated discussions over the merits of different airline deals which was his speciality.
He always fought the corner of the smaller TMCs having been one himself in his earlier career and wasn’t averse to the odd argument or difference of opinion if he thought his members were being disadvantaged. However, our more extreme conversations were over the merits of his well‐stocked “tuck shop” in the top drawer of his desk at work, where we would determine which treat he would choose that day, whilst I, and his second in command David Jackson, would try and negotiate some meagre offering that he wasn’t so keen on. They were fun days. Whilst his career had its ups and downs, Steve was passionate in his goal in getting the best for his members, whom he considered as friends, with humour at the heart of everything he did, sometimes with an edge to it, but deep within himself he had a genuine funny bone, living life to the full. I also have to mention the unswerving support of his wife Debbie, the rock without whom he wouldn’t have been able to maintain his humour throughout it all, and with the huge belief to the end that he could beat this awful disease. I’ll miss his humour, his conversation, his passion for the travel industry and of course just as importantly, his sweetie shop. An ordinary life maybe, but one filled with love and friendship, laughter and tears (of joy) and he will be remembered fondly by many in the travel trade and beyond, which let’s be honest, is not a bad way to be remembered.