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People urged to join hospitality sector

Staff shortages

Staff shortages are continuing in the hospitality industry throughout the UK, putting extra strain on businesses

People are being urged to join the hospitality industry as the Lake District and Cumbria as a whole is hit by a ‘crippling staff shortage’.

Staff shortages are continuing in the hospitality industry throughout the UK, putting extra strain on businesses.

But it is a particular concern for the Lake District, which relies heavily on its tourism, hospitality and leisure sectors.

Kirsty Ridge, the managing director of Lakeland Inns, wants more job seekers to consider the industry as a long-term option and has developed the mentoring service offered at six pubs across Cumbria she owns.

By implementing more sophisticated training software within the pubs, and offering more appealing career progression opportunities and staff incentives, Kirsty is hoping more people will follow her lead into the food and drink sector.

She said: People need to understand that hospitality is a career, and there are lots of opportunities to grow, learn and develop within the industry. My example is the best I can use. I left school at 16, and now I’m running a successful and growing group of pubs.

With work-based learning, there’s so much scope to progress and have a really successful career in hospitality, and we want to invest in our future workforce, she said.

Training opportunities that exist within Lakeland Inns include NVQs and apprenticeships in the hospitality and food and drink sectors, with numerous opportunities to upskill on the job available too.

Work-related incentives range from annual pay increases to encourage longevity and 30% staff discounts on food and drinks at Lakeland Inns venues. The company also offers flexible working hours.

Kirsty said: There are various opportunities to work for Lakeland Inns and work your way up the career ladder, and we’re keen to help people improve their skills to achieve this.

It is important that staff feel valued, and creating these opportunities is our way of showing that we really want to help people realise their potential within the industry, she said.

Suzanne Caldwell, Managing Director of Cumbria Chamber of Commerce: This is an immensely difficult time for the hospitality sector in the county. Just at the time when it should have been making the most of the economy opening up and so many staycations it was hit with a crippling staff shortage.

A lot of businesses have been unable to open at full capacity because of this lack of staff, with owners and staff under significant pressure, she said.

She said: This isn’t restricted to this sector, there are challenges in care, manufacturing, transport and more, which makes it all the more difficult to resolve.


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