28 May 2021
Cotswold businesses speak to local leaders about the impact of COVID-19 during English Tourism Week

Local MP’s and councillors will use English Tourism Week to visit local businesses to shine a light on how they’re recovering from the impact of COVID-19.

They’ve been invited by Cotswolds Tourism – the Destination Management Organisation for the Cotswolds, who’ll show the guests the Cotswolds are now well-placed to welcome visitors back to the myriad market towns.

English Tourism Week runs from 22nd May to 31st May and gives tourism bodies like Cotswolds Tourism a great opportunity to promote the importance, value and vast contribution the sector makes to the Cotswolds region and the UK economy.

Both Cotswold District & West Oxfordshire District councils have long recognised the value of Tourism as one of our most valuable service sectors. Tourism spend plays a vital role in driving the wider visitor economy with local jobs and over a billion pounds is spent by visitors across the wider Cotswolds region.

As well as highlighting the opportunities created by the ‘Uncover the Cotswolds’ and ‘Real Cotswolds’ campaigns, the week-long event gives Cotswolds Tourism the chance to shout about the incredible tourism offer in the 800 square mile Cotswolds area of outstanding natural beauty.  A number of events are planned and local businesses are being encouraged to help spread the word via social media using the hashtags #herefortourism and #englishtourismweek21.

During a visit to Wild Carrot, Cotswolds MP Sir Geoffrey Clifton Brown enjoyed an electric bike ride and discovered more about the development plans for glamping and sustainability. Councillor Tony Dale from Cotswold District Council joined him and after lunch learning more about the importance of film tourism from Chavenage House’s Caroline Lowsely-Williams they also met trustees from Tetbury Goods Shed to hear how they’ve adapted during the pandemic before visiting local shops in Tetbury.

Local MP, Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown said;

“I am delighted to wholeheartedly support Visit England’s English Tourism Week campaign. I have been out and about in my constituency over the last few weeks visiting a range of tourist venues in the Cotswolds and discussing innovative ideas that have developed during lockdown by those that run these attractions. All we need now is visitors to make the Cotswolds their destination of choice for their holiday this year.”

VisitEngland Director Andrew Stokes said:

“Our annual event to celebrate and champion English tourism has never been more important, providing a timely opportunity to show the outstanding offer here on our doorstep as we head in to the critical summer season and to support local businesses and visitor attractions, who have lost months of vital trading, as they reopen and rebuild.

“Millions of jobs and local economies rely on tourism and businesses and destinations have been working flat-out, innovating and adapting to safely welcome visitors back and making sure they have a great experience. They will be very pleased to see you.”

Further visits will involve Witney MP Robert Courts and the leader of West Oxfordshire District Council and MP’s around the wider constituency’s, as well as visits from Nick de Bois Chairman of the VisitEngland Advisory Board. Mr De Bois visit comes at an important time for the industry, as he is leading an independent review to assess how Destination Management Organisations across England are funded and structured, and how they perform their roles. He will visit Adam Henson’s Cotswold Farm Park and meet businesses both in person and via a virtual meeting kindly hosted by Cotswold Inns and Hotels.