A LOCAL hospitality group says it is overcoming the skills gap and post-Covid/ Brexit recruitment challenges by employing more mature team members.

It is widely reported that the hospitality industry is facing a recruitment crisis as the sector begins to open up post-pandemic.

This has left businesses struggling to recruit. Research published in The Guardian last month showed there were 28 per cent less people working in hospitality compared to the same time last year.

"Many people have changed their way of working and discovered new opportunities, which in addition to better unemployment benefits, has resulted in many venues struggling to recruit," said a spokesperson for Pembrokeshire's Retreats Group.

The spokesperson added that, for the group, the availability of potential employees was already minimal.

The group manages Twr y Felin Hotel, Roch Castle and Penrhiw Priory, all located on the St Davids peninsula,

"Most school and college graduates relocate to large cities, for more varied and readily available education and work opportunities," said the spokesperson.

It says it has 'long been encouraging applications from mature job seekers' to overcome recruitment challenges. These 'offer an invaluable wealth of life and work experience and are already skilled in many aspects of hospitality'.

Two recent recruits include Tara Pitman and Andrew Campbell, who will work part time across the three venues, as breakfast chef and check in host respectively.

Tara has run two successful restaurants in north Pembrokeshire including Morgan's in St Davids, which was awarded 2 AA rosettes in 2009.

Andrew is the current chair of the Wales Tourism Alliance, as well as the professor of practice in tourism at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

Sam Wilson Croft, HR manager of the three venues said:

"I am thrilled to welcome Tara and Andrew to the team, who are both incredibly experienced and have established excellent careers within Welsh hospitality.

"This is a real boost to the existing team and enables the venues to open at full capacity to recoup much needed revenue from the enforced closures.

"Our ethos is to offer an inclusive, positive and empowering work environment, allowing the team to excel within their roles, which in turn creates a warm, welcoming and high standard of service for our guests."