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London's hospitality workers enjoy annual festival

Posted on 12 September, 2019

Some 3,500 turned up for a spot of September sunshine for this year’s family-friendly London Hospitality Festival on 8 September.

The annual free event, aimed at those from the capital’s hospitality industry (hotels, restaurants and suppliers), comprised of food and drink tents, children’s activities, circus training, a day-long music festival, the UK’s largest hospitality football tournament and the return of a softball competition.

Music was pumped out all day from an eclectic line-up of leading UK independent music artists at the King’s House Sports Ground in Chiswick, with HIT Training one of seven of the event’s main sponsors.

Springboard Charity’s CEO Anne Pierce was there with her team to facilitate the National Waiters’ Day race. Inspired by the original ‘Course des garçons de café’, which began over a century ago in France, hundreds of waiters competed with the object to neither drop nor spill the bottles or water on their trays.

Hilton London Heathrow Airport’s Cranio Silva and Cloud-based property management software firm Mews Systems’ Svenja Heer took top prize in the male and female competitions respectively. The team event was won by Mayfair’s Royal Air Force Club. The various races raised over £30,000 with the monies going towards Springboard’s FAB programme, which helps those with barriers to employment to achieve sustainable careers within the hospitality industry.

Some 80 companies tackled the 7-side football competition as they challenged for seven trophies across eight round-robin groups before the knockout stages. SUSHISAMBA and Duck & Waffle conceded just one goal in their dozen games to secure the overall prize with the best record, as well as one of the six cups courtesy of a 3-1 final triumph over Firmdale Hotels. They now have the opportunity to celebrate in style thanks to the innovation of Big Bus London, with the chance to locally parade the top trophy - that bears a passing resemblance to the prestigious FA Cup - in an open top bus.

Last year’s champions Park Plaza Hotel Westminster Bridge were ousted at the semi-final stage by eventual cup winners Crowne Plaza London Docklands 2-0. Fresh Montgomery, Sea Containers London, St. Ermin’s Hotel and The Bloomsbury were all crowned champions in the other cup competitions.

Kimpton Fitzroy London, who were a late entry, triumphed in the 12-a-side softball mixed final against Maybourne Hotel Group.

The London Hospitality Festival, founded and organised by Paul Gilley of PJ Search & Selection, has developed into a popular event that embraces and promotes the hospitality industry with innovation and year-on-year improves.

For further information visit www.londonhospitalityfestival.co.uk


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McMullen’s chose HIT as its sole external provider for Apprenticeships and vocational qualifications in early 2015 and since then we have found them a pleasure to work with.  Their expertise in this sector is superior and they have proven to be a professional and supportive partner who have a passion for learning and development, which matches our own organisation.

Amanda Walden – Training & Recruitment Manager, McMullen's

Encouraging our staff to improve their skills set and supporting them through apprenticeships and training programmes underlines our commitment to help them further develop their own careers. Offering the Level 4 Higher Apprenticeship also gives the Brend Group a point of difference which I’m convinced will help attract new members of staff in the future.

Andrew Mosedale - Group HR Manager, Brend Hotels

Our partnership with HIT has certainly made recruitment much easier in a very difficult labour market and gives us a point of difference in an increasingly competitive environment.  Kew Green has also benefited enormously from well trained, skilled and competent staff who contribute significantly to the ever improving and high levels of customer experience that our guests expect and deserve.

Andrew Tregenza - HR Business Partner, Kew Green Hotels

Apprenticeships allow us to give people a great opportunity to develop a career with us and learn a skill or trade that will accompany them throughout their career and life. We see progression to the Level 4 qualification as key to our strategy of providing development at all stages of an employee’s career with Harrison.

Alex Taylor - Training Manager, Harrison Catering Services

There is a shortage of skilled chefs within in our industry at present and any organisation that truly believes in the value of training and development of bright future stars will enable themselves to be in a strong position for the years ahead. Investing in smart training and development is at the heart of what we do within WSH, so it has been refreshing to work alongside HIT within our Baxterstorey Chef Academy. 

Rik Razza - Head of Chef Development, BaxterStorey

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