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Press releases


22nd Dec 2006

A UK dwarf shortage has been identified, right in the middle of the festive season.

The demand for little people is so big it's caused a crisis for one festive hotel chain. Travelodge has been searching high and low for several weeks now for dwarves in preparation for their exclusive "Christmas Shopping Service".

The plan was to recruit around 20 dwarves for its city centre hotels so that the company could add a little sparkle to their guests' Christmas shopping experience. That was until the dwarf drought emerged.

Huge demand for pantos this year particularly -Snow White - has created the biggest ever demand for little people. Hundreds have been snapped up to play Doc, Dopey, Bashful, Grumpy, Sneezy, Happy and Sleepy in the classic Christmas show. The Dwarves have been lured by a reputed 600 payday for playing the role of one of Snow Whites seven friends.

All of these factors conspired to leave Travelodge elfless. The company has been forced to abandon the dwarf hunt and has now opted for elfves to help shoppers. The service has also been scaled down to just one area.

The elf shopping service will be available at the new Manchester Trafford Park Travelodge hotel for the week leading up to Christmas. The three elves are book able via reception and will accompany guests to the nearby Trafford shopping centre to carry all of their bags of Christmas goodies.

Mark Timmins, Manchester Travelodge, District Manager said: "Our hotel is a cracker and is perfect for a Christmas shopping dash. Travelodge was hoping that we could offer this festive shopping service far and wide but we were the only hotel to get it. It seems that demand is so high that even theatres are falling short on Dwarf front."

Guests can book an elf at the hotel reception desk. Time slots are available throughout the day for a maximum period of two hours and the service is free to customers.

The first customer to trial the elf service was the Rigg family from Cumbria who are spending two nights at the Manchester Trafford Park Travelodge hotel. Amanda and Ian have brought their two children Harris and Taylor to the Trafford Centre to do their Christmas shopping. Amanda Rigg said: "The elf shopping service is fantastic, it's so difficult to shop with children at the best of times, but it is a hundred times worse at Christmas time. We hired an elf and managed to complete most of our Christmas shopping in the two hours with their help. Plus the kids were kept entertained and they loved being accompanied by an Elf. They were made to feel very special. It is such a thoughtful and useful idea from Travelodge."

OZ Promotions, one of the UK's leading promotional companies said: "There seems to be a national shortage of short people this year, we have been inundated with client requests for elf's and dwarfs to participate in panto's, grottos and seasonal promotional activity. We have been searching the country for months to find suitable short people to play these roles and in the end have had to go with taller counterparts."


For further information, please contact:

Shakila Ahmed
PR Manager
Mobile 07802 702 499

Notes to Editors:

In Norse mythology, the races of elves and dwarves has been opposite in many ways, though they are often mistaken for each other in modern times. The elves according to the Norse tradition were of human height and beautiful - while dwarves were commonly thought of as short - small people

Rooms at Manchester Trafford Park are available from 15 and can be booked at

The hotel is located at: 17 Trafford Way, Urmston, M17 8DD
Telephone number: 0870 191 1838

The elf shopping service is free of charge for guests staying at Manchester Trafford Park Travelodge hotel.

An elf can be booked at the hotel reception desk - bookings are subject to availability and on a first come basics

The service is available for the week leading up to Christmas

An elf can be hired free of charge for up to two hours to help carry your shopping bags - whilst shopping at the Trafford Centre

Travelodge offers rooms from 26 including London and city centres. Rooms can be can be booked at or by calling 08700 850 950

Travelodge was the first budget hotel brand to launch in the UK in 1985. It currently has 296 hotels across the UK, Ireland and Spain with the majority in city centre,s near attractions and airports.

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