A NEW branch of the UK’s fastest-growing independent travel agency has opened its doors in Northwich creating seven jobs.
Northwich Town Mayor, Councillor Kevin Rimmer, was there to cut the ribbon at the official opening of the new Hays Travel store in Witton Street.
Around £100,000 has been spent on transforming the former shoe shop which includes a Bureau de Change.
It is the 38th branch for Hays Travel North West, which has branches across North Wales and the north west and is on course to have opened 50 stores in total by the end of 2020.
Impressed by the new store, Councillor Rimmer, said: “It has been a great honour to be the person cutting the ribbon at the official opening of Hays Travel in Northwich. The team here have been very welcoming.
“The extremely smart and professional look of the new store shows the investment which Hays Travel has made in our community and I think it is an excellent addition to the town centre. It’s very positive to see such a well thought of brand move in.
“I think the Hays Travel team will be booking some fantastic holidays for their customers who will be able to make the most of the specialist advice they are able to offer.
“I wish the team all the very best for their future in Northwich.”
There to welcome the Mayor was manager of Hays Travel Northwich, Rebekah Gate, who lives in Cuddington, and is the former Deputy Manager of Northwich’s Thomas Cook store.
The 29-year-old, who is mum to Amelia, three, said: “I am thrilled to be leading the team at the new Hays Travel store in Northwich which is obviously a town very close to my heart.
“It has been lovely to welcome the Mayor to come and cut the ribbon for us and I am looking forward to welcoming our customers and booking their holidays for them. I feel sure I will be seeing lots of familiar faces and it will be nice to meet some new people too!”
The former Hartford High and Hartford Manor Primary School pupil, who has worked in the travel industry for 11 years and is a Disney specialist, said: “The feedback from our customers has been fantastic. They have been very impressed with the look of the store because it is so bright and modern.
“We have been very busy booking holidays since opening our doors which is very encouraging and so many people have come in to wish us well.
“As an independent travel agency, we can offer holidays from a huge range of different providers and tour operators and work with customers to find the exact holiday which fits their budget.”
Hays Travel North West was founded by managing director Don Bircham, who set up his business with a single travel agency in Mold town centre, North Wales, in 2000.
His network of travel agencies are now the main partner of the hugely successful ATOL-protected Hays Travel, based in Sunderland, which has just announced a turnover of more than £1bn and is the UK’s largest independent travel agency.
At the end of last year, Don’s firm announced a turnover of more than £70m for the first time and this year, the expanding business is aiming to provide £100m of holidays. In the last six months, it has opened up other new branches in Didsbury, Rochdale, Runcorn, Macclesfield and Ashton-under-Lyne, Tameside.