Media release 8 February 2018
JHA backs campaign to save Jersey Accommodation and Activity Centre
The Jersey Hospitality Association is joining the fight to save the home of the Jersey Accommodation and Activity Centre.
The successful centre – which has provided low-cost accommodation to thousands of visitors since it opened in 2011 – is based in the former Haut de la Garenne children’s home, which the Independent Care Inquiry recommended in its 2017 report that ‘consideration be given as to how the buildings can be demolished’.
Since the centre opened, it has provided 35,500 bed nights, which equates to 15,000 people coming to Jersey. It costs an individual just £31 a night to stay there, including breakfast. For school groups, it is £25 per person.
JHA President Fiona Kerley said: “The Jersey Accommodation and Activity Centre is a valued member of the association and we stand shoulder to shoulder with the directors and their team as they fight for their home. It is now a vibrant centre filled with optimism. Of course, we’re fully aware of the building’s past but the States have already invested over £2m into turning Haut de La Garenne into a modern, fit-for-purpose accommodation centre.
JAAC co-director John Fox said: “We provide low-cost accommodation in a beautiful part of the Island to a wide variety of group and individual visitors. We have hosted Island Games teams, competitors in the Dance World Cup and the French and Italian national sides competing in the European Touch Rugby Championships. They only see a well-equipped and lively centre; not an old children’s home.
“Taxpayers have already invested wisely to provide hostel accommodation in Jersey. Why spend even more money demolishing a building whose past should not dictate its future. Today, it is busy, vibrant and active, and that should be how it is regarded.”
Notes to Editors
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The Jersey Accommodation and Activity Centre is run by Paradox Limited, which was established by John Fox and Petula Skinner in 2007 as an agency to organise bespoke holidays in Jersey. It opened as an independent hostel in the former Haut de la Garenne building in 2011.
The majority of guests are on educational visits from France, mostly from the less affluent areas of Normandy and Brittany, to improve their English and have a ‘British’ experience.
The building has room for 104 guests indoors in 23 rooms, which include singles, twins, trebles, quads, six-, eight- and ten-bedded rooms (some en-suite). A further 40 people can camp outside.
In 2017, 45% of JAAC revenue was redistributed to other providers in the Jersey economy, including attraction-providers, water sports centres, transport companies and utilities.