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February 10, 2008
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UK destinations urged to get involved with British Tourism Week




Public sector and commercial tourism businesses, including destinations, are being urged by VisitBritain, which markets the UK abroad, to organise or attend an event under the British Tourism Week banner.
 
The second annual event takes place from 10-18 March, and, with the support of His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, aims to galvanise organisations and individuals to take pride in being part of tourism, the nation’s fifth biggest industry. Events aim to raise the profile of an £85 billion visitor economy and draw national awareness to its critical importance and the contribution it makes local economies and millions of livelihoods.
 
Already more than 60 different events are already listed on the British Tourism Week website, but organisers hope that every region and destination will organise something to help businesses or raise awareness of tourism experiences among consumers.
 
Stephen Dowd, co-chairman of British Tourism Week’s multi-sector steering committee and chief executive of Ukinbound, said: “Around 2.1 million people – nearly 8% of the workforce – in a wide range of sectors depend on tourism for their jobs and livelihoods.
 
“We are asking businesses to help us raise awareness of the tourism experiences that can be enjoyed in this country. We hope that if nothing else, MPs, the media, opinion-leaders and consumers will take time for a day visit or overnight stay during British Tourism Week.”
 
This year British Tourism Week recognises that 80% of industry success comes from domestic visitors and that, with increasing competition from overseas destinations, it can do more to encourage Britons to holiday at home.
 
“Taking place in a year that witnesses the handover of the Olympic Games from Beijing to London and the start of a four-year Cultural Olympiad for the whole of the nation, we want to ensure that the many sectors that make up our industry, the private and public sector, are prepared to unite in generating a lasting legacy,” said Tom Wright, chief executive of VisitBritain and co-chairman of British Tourism Week.

For more on British Tourism Week, visit www.britishtourismweek.com for more information.
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