Jobs for local people at Chesterfield's new Premier Inn hotel
Twenty local people have been offered jobs at Chesterfield's new Premier Inn hotel.
Work is nearing completition to transform the former Co-op building on Elder Way into the 92-bed hotel as part of a £10.5million project.
Ahead of the expected opening of the hotel next month, Premier Inn and Chesterfield College have joined forces to offer an academy providing work experience for residents.
Sixty local people joined the academy - which is supported by Chesterfield Borough Council - with a guaranteed interview at the end of the course. Of these, 20 were offered jobs at the hotel.
A council spokesperson said more jobs will be created on the basement and ground floors of the prominent property when they are converted into leisure and dining space.
Councillor Terry Gilby, the council's cabinet member for economic growth, said: "One of the authority's key priorities is to create a thriving borough.
"For a long period after the Chesterfield Co-operative closed down we had an empty, derelict building. Jomast Developments is in the process of completely transforming it into a 92-bed Premier Inn hotel which is offering new jobs for local people which is positive news for the borough."
Mark Hill, commercial property director of Jomast Developments, said: "Although not yet complete, the new Premier Inn will be a fantastic environment for the new team to work in. It's light, airy and contemporary. The team and I are looking forward to handing over the building to Premier Inn shortly."
Lee Kirton, Chesterfield College's work skills delivery manager, added: "This has been a fantastic opportunity for local people. We've been working with the local Jobcentre Plus and the borough council to put on a sector-based work academy. It's been a fantastic success for the learners, ourselves and the local Jobcentre Plus."
The redevlopment of the former Co-op building is part of the Northern Gateway scheme, which also includes the new Saltergate multi-storey car park and an enterprise centre on part of the Donut car park.