“I work for Dragon

John Price's Inspirational Journey

Career Path: Glass Collector > Night Porter > Hotel Management Degree > Front Office > Operations Manager

“My boss is Duncan Bannatyne off Dragon’s Den. I have done many events for Duncan including his wedding. At only 30 years old, there is still so much more to achieve!" 

My Story:

I started out as a shy 16 year old collecting glasses at a local family run hotel called Headlam Hall, whilst studying my A-Levels. I was studying to become a chartered surveyor, but before long I was working at weddings, the bar, and the restaurant, as well as Night porter doing 40 hours a week as well as college! No one made me do it, I just couldn’t get enough of the hotel. So I ended up changing my degree to Hotel management and studied for four years at Sheffield Hallam University. This included a placement year with Marriott hotels in Newcastle where I won the Young Guns award in the Caterer. This got me into Springboard UK and became an Ambassador doing school and college visits. This extra commitment outside of work was rewarded with a visit to Buckingham Palace in 2002. Whilst doing this, after graduation I was working with Marriott Hotels in Slough in Front Office, before moving to Lincoln as Restaurant & Bar Manager, then settling in Ipswich Marriott as Operations Manager. During this time I won the Acorn Scholarship which opened up a new set of doors for me in terms of people and opportunities. I had the best year ever, travelling to New York, personal mentoring, master classes, and the big finale was guest speaker at the Acorn Ball in front of 250 people. That would not have been possible 12 months prior! The final move with Marriott brought me to Norwich as Operations Manager. Whilst here I won an Acorn Award, which is one of the highest awards in the industry. I also met my wife here as well…

Four years ago, I moved back to my home town of Darlington, as General Manager of Bannatyne Hotel Darlington. I have since become Operations Manager of Bannatyne Hotels Ltd with three hotels and plans to build four more within the next 12 months. The owner is Duncan Bannatyne off Dragon’s Den. I have done many events for Duncan including his wedding. At only 30 years old, there is still so much more to achieve!

It is amazing really to see what can be achieved in this industry. I have seen many things, and met many amazing people, and I owe it all to the hotel industry. I really cannot imagine a job that gives so much satisfaction and excitement. If I could start all over again, I would do exactly the same.



Funny Story: As a young Duty Manager working in Newcastle I dealt with many famous people. All the football teams stayed there including England. I had to ask two celebrities to keep the noise down in their bedroom, another celebrity asked to see the Duty Manager about the poor quality adult material in the bedroom, and finally Liam from Oasis told me to leave him alone (not his exact words) when offering him help with his luggage.





Operations Manager - Bannatyne Hotels Ltd

“You spend along time at work during your life time, why not do something you enjoy?"

Countries Worked:
UK - By Choice not because of lack of opportunities out there

The Fun Stuff:

“Really enjoy spending time with my wife and two kids as well as drinking and watching Darlington Football club!"


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