A search tool hosted on VisitBritain's website, designed to allow tourists to find accommodation across the country, has stopped working (www.visitbritain.com/en/Accommodation).
The glitch means that the search tool will offer no results, whenever any British destination is typed into it.
The problem was pointed out to Caterer and Hotelkeeper by an independent hotelier who had been trying to use it to book his own holiday.
"As independents we rely on this organisation to promote us," the unimpressed hotelier said.
The problem, which arose several days ago, is thought to have come about as a result of a change of remit for VisitBritain and confusion over which tourism body now carries responsibility for providing accommodation search services - which will have to be retendered to web companies.
The issue with the site comes at an embarrassing time, when VisitBritain is making big efforts to showcase all that the country has to offer as part of its "Great Britain: You're Invited" marketing campaign, during a particularly important year for tourism.
No one from VisitBritain was available to comment.
By Neil Gerrard
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