Fred Olsen Cruise Lines has appointed Geoff Ridgeon as its new head of sales.

Ridgeon, who is currently head of cruise at Fred Olsen Travel, will replace the retiring Mike Evans on May 7.

He will be responsible for managing Fred Olsen Cruise Line’s UK sales teams as well as developing relations with the trade.

Ridgeon will report into Justin Stanton, the line’s sales and marketing director.

Evans will retire on April 26, after spending 27 years at Fred Olsen Cruise Lines. He has held the position of head of trade sales since April 2017.

Stanton said Ridgeon’s appointment would help build upon the line’s current sales success.

“Geoff is well-known within the travel industry and, while we will really feel the loss of Mike Evans moving on, he will be a great addition to our senior management team,” Stanton said.

“Geoff comes to us with a wealth of knowledge about the travel industry – and Fred Olsen specifically – and we are all looking forward to welcoming him when he takes up his new post in another part of the Fred Olsen group.”

Ridgeon, who has 14 years of travel agency experience, said: “I am thrilled to be joining another thriving part of the Fred Olsen business.

“I would just like to pay tribute to all my colleagues and managing director, Steve Williams, for their valuable support over the years.

“I look forward to working with the trade to further develop the understanding of Fred Olsen’s leading ‘closer’ strategy of unrivalled destination experience, exceptional customer service and friendly, smaller ships.”