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

Cotton tells Conservatives: UK tourism is ‘held back' by Government

03 April 2009 by
Cotton tells Conservatives: UK tourism is ‘held back' by Government

The UK's tourism industry is being held back by a Government that ignores its benefits, according to Bob Cotton, chief executive of the British Hospitality Association.

Speaking at a Conservative Party summit on tourism in Brighton yesterday, Cotton warned that financial incentives to the industry had been withdrawn and other capital allowances had been reduced, while funding for VisitBritain had been cut back just at the time when they were needed the most.

He said that the Department for Culture, Media and Sport was responsible for tourism yet there was no tourism section in the department to oversee the biggest industry in its portfolio.

At the same time, responsibility for tourism was split between a number of competing national boards, government agencies, Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) and local authorities.

"All are publicly funded but few bother to work - even to communicate - with each other," Cotton said.

"There is no national co-ordination. Some RDAs favour tourism, others do not. There is duplication of effort. Regional Tourism Boards have all but disappeared. Money is wasted. VisitEngland, representing a country which attracts three-quarters of all overseas and domestic visitors to Britain, has only just been set up."

As for the industry itself, Cotton said there was an overwhelming need for operators to provide even greater value for money.

"We have to raise standards and raise the quality of our tourism offering even higher," he said. "We need more new hotels, more new restaurants, more new tourism facilities. We need existing facilities updated. We need to gain a reputation for a warm welcome that's second to none."

Liberal Democrats take tourism campaign to Downing Street >>

Ten million tourism jobs at risk worldwide >>

New tourism minister Barbara Follett grilled by Caterer readers >>

Tourism Alliance hits out at Olympic trip after cutting VisitBritain job cuts >>

Government's tourism strategy criticised by MPs >>

By Daniel Thomas

E-mail your comments to Daniel Thomas here.

Caterersearch.com jobs
Looking for a new job? Find your next job here with Caterersearch.com jobs

Blogs on Caterersearch.com](http://www.caterersearch.com/blogs) Catch up with more news and gossip on all Caterer's blogs
[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 Group 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