Free 'Match-Making' event to boost Derbyshire tourism jobs

Hospitality and tourism businesses across Derbyshire are being urged to take advantage of a free ‘match-making’ event to put them in touch with the talented high-flyers of the future.

They are invited to join the Big Hospitality Conversation – Market Place, run by the British Hospitality Association and backed by Visit Peak District & Derbyshire, the area’s official tourist board, plus local businesses, at Derby County Football Club on Thursday May 21.

The aim of the high-profile event is to encourage employers to harness the skills of young people under 25 who are keen to make a long-term career in hospitality and tourism, by pledging job opportunities, apprenticeships and work placements on the day.

There will also be plenty of fun on offer, as the programme will include a light-hearted Waiters’ Race. Around 250 young people and hospitality professionals, each bearing a tray loaded with a bottle and water, will sprint for the finish line in a bid to be crowned fastest waiter or waitress in Derby.

Figures from February 2015 reveal that more than a quarter (28.7 per cent) of Derbyshire’s under 25s are unemployed – higher than the national average of 22.5 per cent.

Almost six per cent of workers in Derbyshire currently work in hospitality and tourism, and the visitor economy is poised for further growth in the future, thanks to flagship projects such as Peak Resort near Chesterfield, Derby Velodrome and proposals to transform The Crescent in Buxton into a five-star spa hotel.

“The Big Hospitality Conversation offers the perfect platform for young job seekers to match their skills and aspirations with employers’ needs – whether they already have a job, are undergoing training or are looking for work,” said Lindsay Rae, Industry Engagement Manager at Visit Peak District & Derbyshire.

“We’re hoping as many Derbyshire businesses will come along to tap into the pool of undiscovered talent that is out there, and will spur them to offer young people the opportunity to establish a mutually-rewarding, long-term career in hospitality and tourism.

“Places are limited and offered on a first-come, first-served basis, so I would advise anyone interested in coming along to get in touch with us as soon as possible.”

The Derby event, which will be staged at Pride Park from 9am to 1pm, is just one of a string of events aimed at creating job opportunities across the UK, from Birmingham and Cardiff to Lambeth and Llandudno. The British Hospitality Association aims to create 300,000 new hospitality and tourism jobs by 2020.

The Derby British Hospitality Conversation has been organised in partnership with Visit Peak District & Derbyshire, with funding from the European Social Fund, Local Response Fund and the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership.

Any Derbyshire business keen to attend is invited to contact Lindsay at lindsay.rae@visitpeakdistrict.com or on 01246 212924 ext. 2083.

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