Loss of European staff due to Brexit is "a scandal", says Gary Neville

10 November 2017 by
Loss of European staff due to Brexit is "a scandal", says Gary Neville

Footballer turned hotel developer Gary Neville said that it is "a scandal" that European hospitality staff are leaving the UK because of Brexit.

Neville, who played for Manchester United and England, was speaking to The Caterer ahead of the forthcoming Hotel Forum, during which he will be interviewed on stage and take questions from the audience.

He said he did not want the current rhetoric to drive away young employees working in hospitality. "I'm concerned that we are starting to see language that is unwelcoming to staff," he explained.

"No one loves working with local people more than I do, but everyone in the hospitality industry here has benefitted from working with staff from abroad, just like I benefitted greatly in my football career from being alongside Cantona, Schmeichel and Ronaldo."

GG Hospitality, the company Neville runs with fellow former footballer Ryan Giggs, launched Hotel Football in 2015 and is currently developing two further hotels in Manchester. A 35-bedroom luxury, boutique hotel will open in the city's former Stock Exchange building next year, while planning permission for a 200-bedroom hotel within the mixed-use St Michael's development is due to be submitted later this month.

Neville said that he is taking steps to tackle the looming staff crisis by introducing a hospitality element to Academy 92, a new initiative he founded in conjunction with Trafford College. A two year programme offering a range of qualifications will see talented young footballers being offered personal skills development, alongside their football training, to prepare them for a range of future careers.

The challenge of Brexit and the loss of hundreds and thousands of European workers that may follow will be discussed by a panel of speakers during the Hotel Forum. Andrew Boer, principal of the Edge Hotel School will be joined by leading operators who will talk about what steps they are taking to attract staff and, in particular, make the hospitality sector an attractive career option among parents and schools.

The Hotel Forum will be held on Wednesday 29 November at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge, London. To book tickets, visit the Hotel Forum website.

Hotel Forum: How to build a resilient business >>

Gary Neville heads panel of speakers at Hotel Forum >>

The Caterer Interview: Ryan Giggs & Gary Neville >>

Videos from The Caterer archives

Are you looking for a new role? See all the current hospitality vacancies available with The Caterer Jobs

The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

Jacobs Media is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.


Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking