VisitBritain's chief executive, Tom Wright, is stepping down from the role after seven years to join a new charity, it was announced today.
Wright, who will leave the tourist board after a handover period of unspecified length, is joining the charity formed from the merger of Age Concern England and Help the Aged.
The move follows an 18% cut in funding at VisitBritain and a 40% reduction in staff numbers to 135.
Christopher Rodrigues, chairman of VisitBritain, said: "Now that we are reaching completion of the Tourism Framework Review and preparing the restructuring of VisitBritain to separate VisitEngland with its own chief executive, alongside a streamlined VisitBritain, I understand his desire for a new challenge and, on a personal level, I am delighted he has chosen to accept such a challenging and prestigious role."
Wright added: "It has been a great pleasure and honour to lead VisitBritain through some exciting and challenging times and I believe we have a highly effective and well respected team to lead VisitBritain and VisitEngland towards the major opportunity of 2012 and also to address the current economic downturn.
"The new Framework will also lead to a more effective and efficient approach as to how all the tourism agencies work together."
By Gemma Sharkey
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