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Fascinating visit for London members

Since its start in 1984, the UKHA has kept its mission of sharing knowledge, development and supporting each other.

Recent meetings have focused on current challenges faced in housekeeping and the impact not only on the hospitality establishments but on people facing a variety of issues, including finding talent to join their teams. It was an opportunity for further discussions at UKHA London’s most recent meeting which took place not in one of London’s hotels but at Lakefield Hospitality College, a small private training college in North West London.

A chance for housekeepers to see behind the
scenes at Lakefield Hospitality College

The college was launched in 1962 so recently celebrated 60 years of educating and empowering young women with the skills and passion needed in a variety of hospitality career pathways and has worked hard to attract future talent into hospitality, with a special focus on housekeeping. It’s a UKHA member, due to the unique set up of running a Hall of Residence which includes an onsite laundry and providing housekeeping services for 120 bedrooms and communal areas. Lakefield was delighted to welcome over 40 housekeepers and suppliers keen to learn about their work in preparing students to gain qualifications, but also to talk about student recruitment strategies in schools.

Liana Sparks, Ex London Chair, spoke about the need to create a think tank to see what can be done to start changing the perception of housekeeping as a career and what the UKHA can do now to encourage more members. Lakefield Hospitality College is already collaborating with initiatives in London to help attract young people into the industry and two such projects were invited on the night.

Alexandra Walker, senior project manager from Rinova, spoke about projects centred on hospitality and getting people into work. These include employer pathways which organise free funded training for current and future staff members, skills swaps and bitesize collaboration events.

This linked nicely to the next guest speaker, Vince Kelly, from the Mayors Academy of Hospitality, who spoke of its aims of training and helping people to find hospitality jobs. The academy is setting up a partnership with Lakefield Hospitality College to run funded housekeeping courses, as a sub-contractor.

The London meeting at Lakefield Hospitality College provided an insight into attracting young people into the sector
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