Vale Barry Matters

The untimely death of former APT managing director Barry Matters last month left the Australian travel sector bereft, with his life and distinguished career celebrated at a funeral in early February. Matters passed away at the age of 64 after a short battle with cancer, with the APT Travel Group family paying tribute to his huge contribution to the business.

“Barry was highly regarded and respected throughout the company and the broader travel industry. Over his long and distinguished career Barry formed many strong relationships and friendships at ATG and across the industry. He was a strong leader, a mentor to many and a true gentleman,” according to a statement issued by ATG directors Geoff, Robert and Louise McGeary and the company’s management and staff.

Under Matters’ leadership, APT transformed from an Australian coach tour operator with a single brand focus to a “global leading cruising and touring company with a portfolio of brands and products”. The business formed strategic partnerships with AMA Waterways, Noble Caledonia, Captains Choice, Cruiseco and Setours, which have been highly successful and “set the group up for long term success,” the statement said, adding “Barry’s commitment, wisdom and loyalty to the company will not be forgotten and will be enduring”.