London

Theatre company advert asks if millennials understand 'real world'

Job advert Image copyright Arts Council England
Image caption The advert was posted on Arts Council England's ArtsJobs site

A theatre company has questioned if millennials "are taught anything about... the real world" after being unimpressed by applicants for a job.

The Tea House Theatre, in Vauxhall, south London, posted an advert for the £15,000-£20,000 administration role on Arts Council England's ArtsJobs site.

In it, the advert read that "it shouldn't be this hard" to find "a grafter, who can commit".

The theatre has so far not commented and the advert has since been removed.

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Arts Council England said the advert was deleted for breaching terms as it targeted a specific age group.

The term "millennial" is typically applied to those born between 1980 and 1999, who reached adulthood in the 21st century.


How does the pay compare?

£22,292

Median UK wage for full-time administration workers

£15,000 to £20,000

Offered by Tea House Theatre

  • £429 Median weekly wage for full-time administration worker

  • £288 to £384 Equivalent weekly wage of Tea House Theatre

  • £595 Median monthly rent for one-bedroom home in England

  • £1,300 Median monthly rent for one-bedroom home in London

Getty Images

Analysis by Daniel Wainwright, BBC England Data Unit

Tea House Theatre wonders why "millennials" - the generation born between 1980 and 1999 and the largest age group since the baby boomers - are so turned off a job that "shouldn't be this hard" to fill, but perhaps the answer lies in the pay.

It wants to offer someone between £15,000 and £20,000 a year for an administrative job in London.

This works out at between £288 and £384 a week. That's less than the UK median wage for a full-time administration worker (excluding secretaries).

Rent is also significantly higher in London than anywhere else in England. According to the latest figures from the Valuation Office Agency, a one-bedroom property in London will cost a renter about £1,300 a month. That compares with £595 for England as a whole.

So far from having not been taught "anything about existing in the real world, where every penny counts", it may simply be that potential applicants, many of whom came of age after the 2008 financial crisis, were all too aware of the costs of living and working in the capital.


In the post, the firm described itself as a "receiving house, producing house" which has "an outdoor events company putting on festivals on the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens."

However, the company wrote that it was the third time they had put up the advert in as many months as they "have not been impressed so far."

"One old lady used to run the whole of Mountview Academy with an IBM computer, it shouldn't be this hard," the advert said.

Image copyright Astrid Stawiarz
Image caption Tea House Theatre was criticised for attacking millenials while serving "smashed avocado on toast"

Several people took to social media to comment on the advert.

Theatre company Creative Electric tweeted: "Dear Tea House Theatre, it's never good to advertise that you're entitled, patronising and abusive. Love Millennials x"

Rob Holley, from Camberwell, south east London, tweeted: "You run a tea house theatre selling smashed avocado, Lohikeitto and loose leaf tea by the ounce - maybe lay off the millennials, eh?"

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