Leeds City Council teamed up with LeedsBID (Leeds Business Improvement District), and commercial property development and investment company Landsec, to create £500,000 retail and hospitality training academy, Ambition: Leeds.

The centre was unveiled in October at the heart of the city’s retail hub in the City Exchange building on Albion Street. Training will be delivered in-house by education partners including Leeds City College, Leeds Beckett University and The Source Skills Academy, offering a portfolio of training courses, qualifications and masterclasses available across a range of skill levels.

The initiative was set-up in response to growing demands from local businesses for skilled recruits in a sector struggling to fill increasing numbers of vacancies. Andrew Cooper, Chief Executive at LeedsBID, said: “The retail and hospitality sector in the city is flourishing and it is imperative we continue to grow and support it with highly-skilled staff. Ambition:Leeds provides a great opportunity for employees to access the education, skills and training to help them on the path to a successful career, and for employers who are looking for high calibre candidates with hands-on experience.”