Government takes tourism more seriously with VisitBritain appointment

26 February 2009 by
Government takes tourism more seriously with VisitBritain appointment

The Government's decision to reinstate the role of head of policy at VisitBritain hopefully signals its intention to take tourism more seriously, according to a leading trade body.

The role was scrapped in 2004 when the Government restructured VisitBritain, after deciding that it didn't need policy advice on tourism. It has now been reinstated with the appointment of Anne Harvey, who joins from the Scottish National Party's Westminster Group, where she was parliamentary business manager.

Kurt Janson, policy director at the Tourism Alliance, said: "To reinstate this function suggests that the Government now realises that this was a mistake and that it needs high-quality policy advice. It could also go some way to explain a number of Government's decisions on tourism over the past five years. So this is certainly a step in the right direction - we just hope that the Government listens to the advice and acts on it accordingly."

Harvey, whose previous experience includes positions as principal adviser to MP Angus MacNeil, and a decade as head of research at Holiday Which? magazine, said she was "eager" to begin dialogue with the industry.

VisitBritain said Harvey would work with both public and private sector organisations to identify the issues that were holding back growth of the UK as a visitor attraction and put in place a strategy to overcome them.

Initial areas will include welcome, sustainability, the impact of taxes and visas on cost and ease of access, as well as the implications of changing demographics.

Last month, VisitBritain created the interim role of deputy chief executive and accounting officer.

Sandie Dawe, the tourism body's 2012 Olympic Games strategy director, took on the role following the departure of former chief executive Tom Wright at the beginning of the year.

VisitBritain appoints its first head of policy >>
VisitBritain appoints interim deputy chief executive >>

Follett defends Government's support for tourism >>
Weak pound could boost UK tourism >>

UK tourism deficit rises to £20b-plus in 2008 >>

By Daniel Thomas

E-mail your comments to Daniel Thomas here.

The Caterer Blog]( Catch up with more news and gossip on the Caterer Blog here
[Newsletters For the latest hospitality news, sign up for our e-mail newsletters.
The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

Jacobs Media is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.


Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking