The Campaign for Reduced Tourism VAT, which now has the support of around 400 hotel and tourism businesses, has appointed a new dedicated campaign manager.
Vernon Hunte, a public affairs professional, spent over two years in the office of Keith Vaz MP, chairman of the Home Affairs Committee, as well as three years as public affairs manager of the Institution of Civil Engineers.
For the past year he has worked on campaigns led by GK Political and Hy Consulting, including a campaign for a fair NHS tariff on behalf of the Shelford Group of Hospitals, comprising the largest academic medical centres and large teaching hospitals in England and Wales.
His appointment comes as Portland PR, which has helped to run the campaign for the past year, draws to the end of its contract.
The Campaign for Reduced Tourism VAT is led by the British Hospitality Association (BHA), Merlin Entertainments, Bourne Leisure and the British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions (BALPPA). It presented a report looking at the benefits of a tax cut to the Tourism All Party Parliamentary Group earlier this month.
The group wants to see a cut in VAT on accommodation and attractions to just 5%. The campaign's most recent study claims that a cut would result in the creation of 78,000 jobs over 10 years, along with a return to the Exchequer of £2.6b.
By Neil Gerrard
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