Budget brand Travelodge has announced the opening of 15 hotels across the UK in 2015, with an investment value of £100m.
The expansion of the brand will create 400 new jobs and take the group's number of hotels up to 510, with 37,906 rooms, confirming its position as the second largest hotel brand in the UK behind Whitbread's Premier Inn, which is set to launch its 700th property this year.
Travelodge has also identified the potential over the next eight years for a further 150 new hotels, which would create an additional 3,000 jobs.
Today's announcement from Travelodge follows a visit by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, to Birmingham Airport Travelodge, in which he welcomed the expansion plans. Earlier in the day he made a speech with the prime minister in which they announced their support for the growth of regional tourism, an industry which generated £1.3b for the local economy in 2012 and 2013.
"Our long-term economic plan for the Midlands is to make the area an ‘Engine for Growth' by backing business and supporting growth. The expansion of a great British brand like Travelodge within a growing hotel and leisure industry in the UK, is fantastic news.
"Travelodge's expansion is not just reliant however on tourists as increased demand from business customers and families have also boosted growth."
Peter Gowers, chief executive of Travelodge, added: "With our modernised hotels and unbeatable value, we are well placed to serve the rapidly growing demand for low-cost travel."
Travelodge is currently nearing the end of a £100m modernisation programme, with 87% of its portfolio now featuring the brand's new look and king-size Travelodge Dreamer bed. Last year saw a 17% like-for-like increase in revenue per available room (revpar) across the business, which Travelodge claims makes it the fastest growing major UK hotel brand for like-for-like sales in 2014.
The 15 new hotels, comprising 1,332 bedrooms, set to open this year include four in London boroughs (Greenwich, Raynes Park, Richmond and Wembley); as well as 11 across the rest of the UK on in Ryde, Isle of Wight; Poole, Dorset; Southampton; East Grinstead, West Sussex; Egham, Surrey; Winnersh, Berkshire; Bristol; Llandudno; Harrogate; Glasgow and Peterhead, Aberdeenshire.
Going forward, the first three hotels in Travelodge's long-term expansion plans will be located in Dagenham, London; Dover; and Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, at a total investment of £13m.