Nationwide campaign comes to Derby iPro Stadium to inspire new generation of hospitality professionals

Ufi Ibrahim London BHC

Ufi Ibrahim, BHA Chief Executive

Hospitality and tourism businesses from across Derbyshire, including restaurants, hotels and catering establishments and attractions, will come together on Thursday 21st May 2015 at Derby County Football Club to pledge job opportunities, apprenticeships and work placements for the regions young job seekers in the latest Big Hospitality Conversation, run by the British Hospitality Association.

According to data from February 2015, over one quarter of Derbyshire’s under 25s are unemployed (28.7%), a statistic higher than the national average (22.5%). Unemployment in the area is most common in young people, and the Big Hospitality Conversation has been designed to tackle this challenge, creating and generating employment opportunities for young job seekers.

Currently 5.9% of working people in Derbyshire are part of the hospitality industry, and the sector is growing thanks to the region’s central location and close proximity to the nearby Peak District. Derby is the UK’s most central city and also home of the UK’s newest velodrome, which is expected to further boost Derby’s growing popularity as a tourist destination.

Ufi Ibrahim, CEO of the British Hospitality Association said:The hospitality and tourism sector in Derbyshire is growing thanks to the area’s popularity as a tourist destination. Landmarks like the new Velodrome and the nearby Peak District are a magnet for domestic and international visitors to the area. For the young people living here, a career in hospitality offers the chance to get involved in a dynamic, growing and competitive sector with great prospects for growth. The breadth of job roles and the training available means that new entrants can succeed very quickly, climbing the career ladder towards even greater opportunities in the industry.”

Jacqui Allum, Director of the BHA’s Big Hospitality Conversation said:Derbyshire’s visitor economy is on the up and there’s a real opportunity for young job seekers in the area to embrace their region’s growing popularity as a tourist destination and find an exciting and rewarding career in hospitality. Ours is a growing industry which is consistently resilient to economic fluctuations and we’re looking forward to striking up a conversation with young people from the local area who are seeking a new career path or job opportunity.”

Steve Fletcher, General Catering Manager at the iPro Stadium, commented:Delaware North is delighted to be hosting the Big Hospitality Conversation, welcoming many prestigious guests and supporting the creation of job opportunities in the region.”

The Big Hospitality Conversation is a nationwide campaign led by the British Hospitality Association in partnership with Springboard, Believe in Young People, National Apprenticeship Service, Business in the Community, and the DWP. It offers a commitment to creating job opportunities for 16-24 year olds. Over 40,000 job opportunities have so far been created at events like the one at Derby County Football Club and the aim is for the hospitality industry to create up to 60,000 jobs for 16-24 year olds by 2016.

Derby Big Hospitality Conversation is being delivered in partnership with Visit Peak District & Derbyshire Destination Management Organisation as part of its European funded skilled project. The 29th Big Conversation is part of an ambitious 2015 programme which will seek to generate job opportunities across the UK at venues including Birmingham, Cardiff, Exeter, London Charlton, Hackney, Swansea, Llandudno, Maidstone, Leeds, Lancashire, LegoLand, Milton Keynes and the Isle of Wight.

Inspired by Fred Sirieix, General Manager at Galvin at Windows and co-ordinated by The Springboard Charity, National Waiters Day will also be taking place on the 21st May. This will be a day to celebrate the excellence, dedication, hard work and discipline of all 3 million employees working in the hospitality and tourism industry in the UK and inspire people about the range of dynamic and vibrant careers the industry has to offer.

Anne Pierce, CEO of Springboard said: “Springboard is proud to be one of the founder partners of the Big Hospitality Conversation. It is recognised that work experience plays key part in influencing a person’s career choice and this is why we are taking a lead role in this initiative through Springboard’s quality work experience programme, INSPIRE, which has been developed to provide job seekers with valuable work experience.

“We are delighted to celebrate National Waiters Day in Derby, an initiative to promote the waiting profession and hospitality industry as a great career choice and celebrate the success of front of house staff in the UK.”

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