J&R Group invest in low-rent accommodation for staff


The owners of The Seaforth in Ullapool have invested in bespoke, low-rent accommodation for staff after facing the reality of not being able to fully open their popular Seafood restaurant, bar and Fish and Chip Shop, due to a lack of affordable homes in the area.

Seaforth owners, J&R Group, took the decision to purchase the Morefield Motel which was on the market for£450K specifically for staff.

The purchase has made available 10 rooms at low rents for local and international staff, with an additional apartment housing managerial staff. Workers are also able to remain in the property all year round, instead of seasonally- a move specifically designed to improve wellbeing and work/life balance.

However, all rooms are already full, with up to 45 people being employed in high season, and as a result Seaforth bosses are now scoping for further development onsite with plans currently being developed to extend further on the site.

Delia Keating, Recruitment Manager for the group explains, “Because of our location it is very difficult to find private rental accommodation for staff. In fact, it is virtually impossible. We were in a situation where we could not fully open our business because it was limited by accommodation for staff.

“We have a mix of local and international staff, here, so it is really important for them to be able to have a home but there is such a lack of affordable accommodation. We have even had other local businesses asking if we can house their staff because they are struggling to retain good people.”

Jody Keating, General Manager of The Seaforth added, “We are very grateful to the owners that we have this accommodation. We are aware that this is not an option open to all businesses. Our staff are really important to us. They are like family. If people are coming to Scotland to work, they need a proper home.”

The Highland housing shortage, allied with fewer EU workers following Brexit, has placed severe staffing pressures on hospitality and tourism providers in the Highlands and Islands.


Category: News, Restaurant
Tags: Delia Keating, Highlands and Islands, J&R Group, Jody Keating, The Seaforth, The Seaforth in Ullapool