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Downton Abbey drives demand for butlers


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Jim Carter as Mr Carson in TV period drama Downton Abbey.

Jim Carter as Mr Carson in TV period drama Downton Abbey.

A spike in demand for household butlers in Britain has been attributed to popular period television drama Downton Abbey.

Recruitment agencies have seen a sharp rise in requests for domestic staff from rich families trying to live like on-screen characters Lord and Lady Grantham, British newspaper The Daily Telegraph reports.

"There is a trend for the super-rich to want a piece of the lifestyle they see in movies and on programs like Downton Abbey," says Sara Vestin Rahmani, a spokeswoman for London training agency Bespoke Bureau.

"We train butlers and place them with clients, and we have never seen demand like we have seen this year."

The agency has this year found jobs for 430 butlers, which is already double the number placed last year and more than four times the number in 2010.

Requests for British-trained butlers come from as far away as China, Vestin Rahmani says.

However, the services of highly-trained domestic staff do not come cheap, with experienced individuals earning up to £150,000 ($A230,720).


5 comments so far

  • I wonder if there will be a spike in demand for zombie wranglers in America attributed to the Walking Dead.

    Date and time
    December 03, 2012, 8:16AM
    • Amazing... this surge in the popularity of the butler.

      In our home, our Butler's name is 'Mummy' and she is a pretty good butler indeed.

      Excellent driver, pretty good cook, good at the washing, cleaning and tidying up, and... she's also very good at homework assistance, and a fabulous birthday party planner and coordinator. She is also first-aid trained, so when things do go wrong, she always knows exactly what to do.

      Not sure the family could do without her... >;)

      Date and time
      December 03, 2012, 10:41AM
      • As a woman you don't count. Now if you were a man owing half the things you've listed you'd be worth your weight in plums.

        Date and time
        December 03, 2012, 5:25PM
      • Arrrh! I hate auto-correct! "...owing." should read "...doing..." :-)

        Date and time
        December 03, 2012, 6:19PM
    • I fear that rrrr is correct. The work women do in the average family is so undervalued. As the article stated, a good butler is paid GBP150k. The average stay at home mum can expect whatever the equivalent of the child endowment payment was back when my kids were little and her bread winner gets the break with family tax benefits. I do hope he treats her well and uses the advantage to taking her out for dinner, flowers and other amusements as she sees fit.
      Viva 10yrswife from a 30 year veteran.

      Date and time
      December 09, 2012, 2:15PM

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