During the trip Mr Hinds and Mr Mackinlay were given a tour of the hotel, allowing them to speak with staff, students and apprentices to find out more about the work being undertaken at The Yarrow.
Craig Mackinlay MP commented: “EKC Group is a massive asset to our region and The Yarrow hotel plays a pivotal role in providing a quality education and work experience to students and apprentices wanting to work in the hospitality industry. It’s important that the Secretary of State came here today to see the excellent work the College and its students does in our community, and also hear directly from College leaders like Paul Sayers about the challenges around securing sufficient and sustainable funding.”
It was a view that was echoed by Mr Hinds, who said that given his background in hospitality he was glad to see the work being undertaken to develop the skilled professionals of the future.
Rt Hon Damian Hinds MP said: “It was great to be invited to visit The Yarrow hotel in National Apprenticeship Week, strongly recommended by Craig. Coming from a background in hospitality, it was fantastic to see the facilities available to local young people to train in and hear about the opportunities provided by EKC Group.”
Executive Director Strategy and Partnerships at EKC Group, Paul Sayers, led the visit, talking at length to Mr Hinds and Mr Mackinlay about the innovative approach being adopted across the Group.
Paul Sayers, Executive Director Strategy and Partnerships at EKC Group, said: “It was wonderful to welcome the Secretary of State for Education to our unique Broadstairs hotel, The Yarrow, and to show him how we are marrying educational provision with real world commercial experiences for our students. Damian seemed very engaged in our entrepreneurial approach to ensuring our students get the best learning opportunities and career progression, and I hope he will consider building on some of our innovations through new policy initiatives.”