Newest Review: ... as well as seeing a shift in quality in entertainment. There seems to be a lot more emphasis on the Red Coats being able to sing, danc... more
Working at Butlins
Butlins in general
Member Name: CaptainP
Butlins in general
Date: 27/05/03, updated on 24/04/05 (7179 review reads)
Advantages: Entertainment, Comeradary, The whole experience
Disadvantages: Can be hard work, Have to keep smiling
So what is it like on the inside? Most of the ops here are about peoples experiences of holidays at each of the centres and opinion is varied. This is to be expected as different people have different expectations and different experiences - 'can't please all of the people all of the time' syndrome.
But what about working their? Is it all play? Well - er..............no!
Here's a brief run-down of the set up and some aspects I felt might be useful writing about.
(Please forgive me for being a little out of date - Rank sold Butlins to Bourne Leisure a few years ago so the set-up may have changed a little but the jobs still need to be done)
2, Catering - Retail and Main catering (ie restaurants and the main dining halls)
3, Customer Services - Accommodation, Customer Services, Cleaning, Gardens, First Aid, Nursery, Security.
4, Finance - Accounts, Treasury, Wages, Bookings, Allocations, Sales, Stores
5, Leisure Services - Waterworlds, Fairground
6, Personnel & training
8, Stage & Productions - Show Redcoats, General Duty Redcoats, Technical Crew, Wardrobe, Childrens entertainers
9, Technical Services - Plumbers, Electricians, Maintenance.
Since the Working Hours legislation has been introduced the standard working week is around 40-48 hours normally over 6 days, and can be in split shifts depending on the department. Main Catering for example requires staff to be in early to prepare for and serve breakfast and then again late afternoon to prepare and serve evening meals.
Many staff complain about pay but again since the introduction of the Minimum Wage it fall in line with legislation. What must be remembered is that you get your accommodation and 3 hot meals a day for free so the pay you get is money in your pocket - free cash, so I never understood those who said they were badly off.
Seasonal staff are put up on centre in staff units. Generally you will share - up to 3 per unit (although supervisors sometimes get a 2 share) with a room to yourself and shared bathroom facilities within your unit. The share is usually with other people from your department - although not necessarily the same section you are working in. Normally the living room is the third bedroom so relaxation is in your own bedroom. Although their is a Staff Accommodation dept the onus on cleanliness within the unit is on yourself.
There is a staff bar with reduced price drinks and some food available but staff are allowed to frequent the venues to watch the shows should they wish (except for some special break weekends when the shows are by ticket only). There are also many bars offcentre (although Skegness is situated someway out of town) with quizzes and skittles etc.
Yes it happens, as it would in any reasonably large town. In 7 years I never had any offered to me. Of course it can depend on the people you get to now and in some respects the deparment (eg. I have heard -although no experience of - split shifts with late night socialising and early mornings, staff using some drugs to get them through the day).
It is very much a play hard and work hard environment. It is a job and should be treated as such. You are ambassadors for the centre and the company. When socialising you must be careful not to act in such a way as to offend anyone. Guests are all around and even when you are not in uniform you may be recognised. (eg try not to be sick over the bosses jacket or urinate in the nearest flower bed).
As long as you remember that you must do a good days work and be smart and pleasant even in the face of adversity (a complaining guest) then there's no reason why you shouldn't make the most of the facilities available. We all have heavy nights and a hangover the next day...ju
st remember t
hat you can't hide from the guests - they are looking to you for their holiday experience - if they enjoy it then so will you.
There's always the problem that you don't get on with the people you live or work with. If so you can always ask for a transfer. It's a place to be enjoyed whilst providing enjoyment for the paying guests. It's not a holiday so don't expect one, but then don't shut yourself away either - get out and enjoy it, but treat it as a proper job too.
A great life if you have the right attitude and frame of mind.