To ask the right hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington, representing the House of Commons Commission, what qualifications will be required of the staff responsible for training tour guides under the new Visitor Service Academy programme scheduled to commence in October 2018.
The Academy will be an internal accreditation developing the skills and expertise of the Visitor Engagement Assistants delivering tours from October. It will be a specialist and formally structured programme, and the trainers used will be both internal and external. There will be no mandatory qualifications formally required of the staff responsible for delivering training. They will be appointed based upon their ability to demonstrate the necessary skills and expertise required. The model has been benchmarked against a number of external organisations and its approach to training is in line with that provided at comparable organisations.