Travel agency Hays continues expansion drive with new Bootle store

The chain is looking to create 60 new jobs across the North West and the Bootle outlet in the Strand Shopping Centre will see six people taken on. Tony McDonough reports

Hays
Kellie Meakin-Wood, the manager of the Hays Bootle store with with Rowland Parry, Strand Shopping Centre manager

 

Travel agency chain Hays is to open a new outlet in Bootle, creating six jobs – part of a drive to take on 60 people in a North West expansion.

Hays, which operates a number of shops in Wirral and Liverpool, said it had signed a lease for a unit in the Strand Shopping Centre and work is about to start on a £60,000 fit-out of the site with a view to opening later in August.

It is part of a major expansion scheme launched at the end of last year by the travel firm which has 30 branches across the North West and North Wales.

The Bootle store, which will include a Bureau de Change, will come hot on the heels of a new St Helens store which was opened last month. A further four branches are expected to be opened by the end of 2018 and collectively the new Hays Travel openings are creating around 60 new jobs.

Don Bircham, Hays Travel North West managing director, said: “Opening up a store in Bootle is a great addition for us and it fits the bill perfectly, in terms of our ideal location.

“We have found a great central location at Strand Shopping Centre, in the heart of a bustling and vibrant community, and the management team there have been extremely supportive and welcoming which has been great.”

New branch manager Kellie Meakin-Wood is no stranger to the town, having been born and brought up in Bootle and previously worked for another travel agency in the Strand for 18 years.

The a mother-of-two, who lives in Bootle and has worked in the travel industry for close to 30 years, said: “I am really looking forward to coming home and being in charge of the new store. We will be the only independent travel agency in Bootle and I feel this is great news for the community.”

The Strand Shopping Centre is home to more than 70 stores and includes big name high street brands such as New Look, Home Bargains, W H Smith and Argos as well as smaller independents.

Rowland Parry, Strand Shopping Centre manager, added: “Hays Travel is an extremely well-respected brand in the travel industry and we are very pleased to be welcoming them to Strand Shopping Centre.”

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