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Press releases

SKILLS MINISTER KICKSTARTS TRAVELODGE'S 2012 SKILLS RACE

13th Jun 2008


The race to up skill the London workforce in time for the 2012 Olympics began in earnest today with the opening of a new 36 million, 202-room Travelodge in London, Southwark.

The new hotel opened by Skills Minister, David Lammy MP recruited 50% of its staff via a pioneering new employment programme headed by Travelodge and Job Centre Plus. The scheme was designed to get London's long term unemployed back into work targeting the capital's most needy groups including single parents.

Also showcased today was the budget chain's first graduate programme and the UKs first Foundation Degree in Hospitality, Budget Hotel and Retail Management. The new qualification was developed by Travelodge and Westminster Kingsway College to provide new industry entrants with a modern approach to running a multi site, retail hotel company like Travelodge.

Grant Hearn said, "There is no doubt that if we are to achieve a lasting tourism legacy following the Olympics, our people will have to provide world class service. Our Olympic skills and employment programme will attract new people to our industry and provide them with the right attributes to run a modern tourism business like ours.

"Our people programme will not only provide the fuel for our ambitious UK growth plans but it will offer London's long term unemployed the chance to carve out a successful career. Skills and employment transforms peoples lives and we believe Travelodge can contribute massively in this area."

Skills Minister, David Lammy MP commented: "Ensuring success on the athletics track or in the swimming pool in 2012 is really important but it's also crucial that we use the London games as a catalyst to equip Londoners with the skills they need to thrive in the workplace.
"Foundation degrees, developed with employers, continue to grow in popularity as both students and businesses appreciate the innovative nature of these qualifications. The Foundation degree in Hospitality, Budget Hotel and Retail Management is exactly the sort of course we are looking to encourage and Im therefore delighted to support Travelodge at the launch of its 2012 skills race."

Beyond London, Travelodge will create over 1000 new jobs in 2008 as part of its unprecedented UK growth programme. The hotel chain will open a new hotel every six working days in locations including: London Euston, Edinburgh, Torquay, Glasgow, Worthing, Stratford upon Avon and Wolverhampton.

The hotel will offer a choice of either family, double or accessible rooms, each providing an en-suite bathroom, luxury king size bed, digital flat screen TV, Wi-Fi and free tea and coffee making facilities. The best deals can be found via travelodge.co.uk.

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For further information, please contact:

Shula Gillam, Senior PR Executive: 07824 491 224
Nick Dines, Head of Corporate Communications: 07827 243921



Notes to Editor:

Local Employer Partnerships-

In October 2007 Travelodge signed up to a new Government backed scheme ran by employment agency, Job Centre Plus. The scheme was designed to get the most needy unemployed back to work - most candidates are out of work from 18 months to two years.

Local Employer Partnerships have been trialled by Travelodge in four of its latest London Hotel openings.



The Foundation Degree:

Travelodge has created the UK's first Foundation Degree in Hospitality, Budget Hotel and Retail Management in partnership with Westminster Kingsway College



The first class will graduate in 2010. Areas of Study include: The Budget Hotel Sector, Retail Management, Sales and Marketing, Food and Beverage, Information Technology, Human Resources and much more



The Graduate Scheme

Travelodge has launched it's first ever Graduate Scheme to recruit the District Managers of the future. In total 250 applicants - 10 places available in September 2008



The scheme:
- 3 to 6 months: Graduates learn the intricacies of hotel management

- 6 to 9 months: Graduates enrol on fast track to management

- 9 to 18 months: Graduates have potential to be appointed as Assistant Hotel Manager in a large hotel

-18 months: Graduates have potential to become Hotel Managers

- 3 to 4 years: Graduates have potential to become a District Managers managing up to 17 hotels



The Fast Track to Management Programme

- Travelodge runs a 12week programme that fast tracks staff to hotel management
- Available to all employees regardless of current position or length of service
- 80 staff promoted to management via programme since 2006
- Six month Fast Track Programme also available for staff that require flexibility


About Travelodge

The first budget hotel brand to launch in the UK in 1985, Travelodge now operates 335 hotels (over 20,000 rooms) - nine in Ireland, three in Spain and the rest in the UK. Travelodge plans to grow it's estate to 70,000 rooms approximately 1000 hotels by 2020.

Six and a half million people stayed with Travelodge last year and 87% of reservations are currently made online at travelodge.co.uk, where room rates start at 19 a night. The chain employs 5,000 staff and is owned by Dubai International Capital, who acquired the organisation from Permira in 2006. In April 2007, Travelodge announced the first stage of a new online retail strategy when it became the first UK hotel company to launch a Travel Insurance product.



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