Students swapped their textbooks for the world of work this week when Boots UK threw open its doors in a bid to inspire young ­people to consider a career in retail.

Up to 100 young people from schools, colleges and universities across the East Midlands spent the week at the Boots Nottingham Support Office, where they took part in a work inspiration programme.

This included one-to-one time with key individuals within the business, as well as working in departments such as IT, brands, trading, supply chain, marketing, retail and pharmacy, risk and planning, finance and HR.

Students also attended group development sessions, and took part in facility tours and presentations.

The initiative was run in support of Business in the Community's Work Inspiration Campaign, which aims to provide young people with a clearer picture of the working environment and showcase career options.

"This experience ­encourages students to think about their talents and ­interests as well as allowing them to discover the breadth of roles within our organisation," said Alex Gourlay, chief executive of health and beauty at Alliance Boots.

Heidi Watson, regional director for BITC in the East Midlands, added: "Businesses are embracing the campaign. This benefits the young people they inspire and their business."