BRITAIN'S BEST HOUSEKEEPER
19th Apr 2006
Fed up with housework? Facing the spring clean? Spare a thought for Brenda Barrett.
Hard-working Brenda has notched up 20 years of dusting, washing and tidying rooms - all 188,800 of them.
In her two decades with Travelodge, the 45-year-old Yorkshire granny has cleaned nearly 200,000 rooms. In doing so, she's:
- Vacuumed the distance from Yorkshire to Cairo* (mileage details at end)
- Polished enough mirrors to stretch from Yorkshire to Hamburg*
- Changed enough duvet covers to cover 232 football pitches*
- Climbed the equivalent of 23 Eiffel Towers in steps*
- Replaced enough toilet rolls to reach from Yorkshire to Rome*
Brenda, head of housekeeping at the chain's hotel near Skeeby at Scotch Corner in North Yorkshire, cleans a room from top to bottom in just 25 minutes.
Brenda said: "I might have been doing the same job for 20 years, but I've got it down to a fine art by sticking to a simple plan."
Wayne Munnelly, Travelodge Director of Sleep, said: "Brenda's work rate and history with Travelodge is incredible. She is fast and effective and she's set a great standard for our hotels. We're immensely proud to have her on board."
By the time Brenda hangs up her mop and calls it a day at 65, she will have spruced up almost 400,000 rooms. Her daily bedroom and en-suite cleaning strategy includes:
- Opening the windows to air the room at the start of the clean
- Emptying bins, wiping them clean
- Stripping the duvet, bed and pillows before shaking them out and plumping up
- Wiping all surfaces including wardrobe shelves
- Polishing desk top and luggage rack
- Washing bathroom tiles, bath, toilet and floor
- Replacing towels
- Hoovering room
- Replacing sheets and covers
- Cleaning all glass and mirrors
- Closing windows
TIPS FOR TACKLING HOUSEWORK
- Start at the top of the room - curtain pelmets and ceiling light shades - and work your way down furniture to floor level
- Dust before hoovering
- Dust with a damp cloth to improve dust collection
- Save money by using worn out tshirts and other old clothing as cleaning cloths
- Don't try to clean two rooms at the same time
- Set a reasonable target - don't try to spring clean the whole house in one day
- Open windows so air can circulate around the house while you clean
- Vinegar can be a cleaner's best friend - a weak solution produces spotless glass, rids limescale and shines chrome
- Drop effervescent tablets down the toilet, leave them for 20 minutes and let the bubbles get to work before scrubbing
- Share responsibilities and tasks with someone else if you can
Over the years, Brenda has found many strange items left behind in the rooms including a set of false teeth which she had to post back to the owner. The top five most bizarre items left behind in Travelodges in 2005 included:
- Prosthetic Legs
- Ferrari Keys
- A Last Will and Testament
- Bridget Jones style Knickers
- 30 Power Ranger Dolls
For more information, please contact:
Travelodge PR Manager
01844 358 624
07841 725 053
As the first budget hotel brand to launch in the UK in 1985, Travelodge has approximately 293 hotels across the UK in city centres, near attractions and airports.
Travelodge has three simple price bands - Supersaver (£10 room - available online), Saver (£26 room - available online) and Flexible (available online or by calling the Reservation Centre on 08700 850 950).
All statistics are approximate.
Brenda's career: 236 days' work a year at a 40 bed hotel = 9,440 rooms a year
188,800 rooms in a 20 year career
* Distance vacuumed 2457 miles (Yorkshire to Cairo - 2329 miles)
* Distance polished 614 miles (Yorkshire to Hamburg - 647 miles)
* 188,800 king size duvets changed (based on a 45m x 90m pitch)
* Climbed the equivalent of 23 Eiffel Towers in steps. 61,360 steps in career to date The Eiffel Tower has 2704 steps = 22.6 towers
* 1171 miles of toilet roll replaced (Yorkshire to Rome - 1093 miles)