Women in hospitality event aims to spotlight key industry issues for women

Women comprise more than half of the UK’s hospitality workforce but many are likely to earn less than their male counterparts, work part-time and face obstacles to advancing their careers.

The hospitality sector has a heavy reliance on women to carry out various roles in the industry, but for many, it is failing to reward them according to Government data published in Women and the UK economy (2023)

Research by Quinyx data (2022), noted that just 17% of professional chefs in the UK are female. Across the sector, one in four women are in the most junior roles available, just over half are in part-time positions, while 71% of female hospitality workers consider quitting the industry.

How women in hospitality overcome these obstacles will be amongst the topics featured in a special Women in Hospitality: Shaping a New Future event to mark International Women’s Day.

The event, organised by hospitality freelancing platform Brigad, is being moderated by Lorraine Copes, founder of Be Inclusive Hospitality and will feature awarding-winning chef Chantelle Nicolson, owner of Michelin Green Star winning Apricity Restaurant, Corinthia Hotel restaurant director Cynthia Coomb and Francesca Turra, head sommelier at Fallow in London.
The free public event is being held at Balderton Capital on Thursday 29th February, 6-9pm, and seeks to empower and inspire women in the hospitality sector.

It will provide a platform for discussion, sharing experiences, and envisioning a future where women thrive in various roles within the industry.

The panel will explore the challenges faced by women in the hospitality sector, the role of mentorship and support networks, and strategies for overcoming obstacles.
They will also discuss how the hospitality landscape has shaped new opportunities for women, the significance of diversity and inclusion in the industry, what allyship looks like in the context of the hospitality industry, and pathways into hospitality, with a focus on the success stories and lessons learned.

Panellist Chantelle Nicolson said: “Discussions that welcome a more inclusive place for hospitality employees is always a positive thing. This is such a wonderful and rewarding industry, so the more people that can feel that way about it, the better.”

Pauline Sumowski, global brand community manager at Brigad, said: “We have organised this event as we are eager to understand the challenges and opportunities facing women in the evolving hospitality landscape.

“There’s a pressing need for more opportunities where women can share their experiences navigating new roles such as freelancing, entrepreneurship, mentoring, and beyond.

“Brigad is committed to facilitating these crucial conversations and providing a platform for women to voice their perspectives. We hope that those attending the event will be able to connect and foster meaningful connections, to empower both themselves and each other to build and sustain great careers within the hospitality industry.”

Registration for this International Women’s Day event, which will include networking opportunities following the panel discussion, is via this Eventbrite link.

The event is being held at Balderton Capital, The Stables, 28 Britannia St, London WC1X 9JF. The nearest Tube station is Kings Cross St Pancras.