Council launches Visitor Economy Forum
The Council in partnership with Telford Business Board has launched a new service that will provide free business support to the local tourism and hospitality sector and encourage joint working.
The Visitor Economy Forum will replace and build upon the Telford Tourism Partnership and will be more representative of the borough’s growing visitor economy and its diverse offer.
The Visitor Economy Forum will provide business support services relevant to the sector while also offering opportunities for businesses to advertise via new and improved communication platforms.
In 2013, Telford alone attracted over 3.6m day trips, generating £160m worth of spend locally and supporting a fifth of local jobs. Latest figures from the Regional Observatory show that day trips to the borough have increased by 40 per cent, now up to 4.1m, which contributed £422m for the local economy.
As the fastest growing town in the West Midlands, with over £800m invested in the borough infrastructure over the last two years, Telford & Wrekin Council is keen to work with the private sector to ensure that the borough’s assets are marketed effectively to local residents, as well as helping to attract more day, overnight and business visitors.
Councillor Shaun Davies, cabinet member for Business, Neighbourhood and Customer Services, said: “We have a fantastic and diverse offer, with the world famous Iron Bridge, our modern Southwater development and shopping centre and our borough towns, each with their own history and charm.
“It is important that we realise the full potential of our destination and work together to grow the visitor economy.”
Anna Brennand, Chief Executive at Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, said, “With the only World Heritage Site in the West Midlands, one of the largest conference and events’ centres in the country, world class museums and attractions, a vibrant and dynamic town centre, along with historic market towns and a broad range of accommodation providers, Telford and Wrekin is an exciting destination to live in or to visit.
“I am delighted to have launched the new Visitor Economy Forum and I am sure that it will help Telford welcome even more visitors to the area, which in turn will help support jobs and prosperity in the borough.”
The Forum will be free for accommodation, attraction, retail and service providers to join and will create a new business network in Telford and Wrekin through which both the public and private sector can work together to ensure Telford competes as a place to live, work visit and invest.