A leading Cornish hotel has been able to retain 90% of the jobs initially considered for redundancy as a result of COVID-19.
The Headland, a double five-star destination in Newquay, had expected that 80 staff would be made redundant in order to safeguard the business following the loss of revenue caused by enforced closure during the lockdown. However, following the reopening of the hospitality industry on 4 July – and the launch of The Aqua Club on 25 July – the total number of redundancies has been reduced to eight.
Carolyn Armstrong, owner, said: “Having worked closely with our team for over 40 years, it was incredibly upsetting to have to start the difficult process of asking for voluntary redundancies back in June. While we are sorry to have to lose eight members of our team, we are relieved that 72 of the 80 at risk roles have been saved.”
She continued: “We would like to thank our team for the patience, understanding and generosity shown during the lockdown, many of whom initially offered to job share in order to protect the livelihoods of their peers, whilst future proofing the business.”
The reduction in the number of redundancies is a result of the reopening of the hospitality sector in July, greater demand to stay in the UK, and ongoing support from the government through initiatives such as the Eat Out to Help Out scheme and the reduction in the VAT rate for hospitality businesses.
The opening of The Aqua Club, The Headland’s new £10 million swimming and wellbeing centre, has also allowed more jobs to be saved, with several members of staff being retrained during the lockdown ahead of moving over to the new facility.
The Headland employs more than 180 staff in total, and runs a year-long talent development programme which allows employees to nurture their skills by working in different areas of the business.
The hotel is currently recruiting for a general manager, for which more than 350 applications have been received so far. Due to an increase in demand following The Headland’s reopening, a further 20 vacancies are also available. These range from senior roles such as deputy head housekeeper, to more seasonal positions for bar staff and switchboard operators.
The Headland’s facilities include 95 hotel rooms and suites, 40 self-catering cottages, a new swimming and wellbeing centre, four restaurants, a five-bubble rated spa, and a surf school.
Awarded five stars by both the AA and Quality in Tourism in 2019, it remains Cornwall’s only double five-star hotel.
For more information, visit headlandhotel.co.uk.