A LUXURY five-star hotel in Sussex has been acknowledged for its work in supporting young people seeking employment.

The Grand Hotel in Eastbourne has been awarded Springboard INSPIRE accreditation for its dedication to supporting work experience students and inspiring young people pursuing a career in hospitality.

The INSPIRE accreditation is the most widely recognised mark of quality assurance for work experience in the hospitality industry.

It is designed to ensure employers offer first class work experiences – whether a short taster, a two-week placement from school, an extended experience from college, or a year-long degree student placement.

The Grand works with local schools and colleges to provide work experience placements as well as running apprenticeship schemes and earlier this year was named one of the 30 Best Places to Work in Hospitality in an annual employment survey.

Charlie Marriage from Springboard, a national hospitality recruitment charity, who carried out the assessment, said: "I was extremely impressed by The Grand Hotel’s work experience programme. All aspects were of a high standard and their commitment to work experience is clear.

All of the staff we met understood the value of quality work experience and were keen to be involved in providing it. There was a good level of communication between staff as well as briefing and de-briefing structures in place. The Grand should be very proud of their dedication to inspiring young people into the industry."

The Grand employs almost 250 permanent and casual members of staff, making it one of Eastbourne’s biggest hospitality employers.

Personnel and development manager Sarah Hoyle said: "We strongly believe that the recruitment challenges facing the hospitality industry can be eased by creating a pipeline of talent that starts as young as 14 or 15 through work experience placements.