Witney News - Support for tourism industry through recession

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Support for tourism industry through recession

West Oxfordshire District Council is continuing to provide support to tourism businesses during the recession.

An open afternoon was held at one of the District's largest hotel and conference centres, Eynsham Hall, North Leigh, on Wednesday (June 24th) for businesses to get together, view the venue and meet other people from the tourism sector. More than 160 people attended.

The Council was involved in the event to encourage businesses to meet up and network as part of its work to support and promote tourism.

Cllr Hilary Biles, Cabinet Member for Leisure, Tourism and Health, said: “The recession is affecting businesses in West Oxfordshire, as it is across the country. Tourism plays a significant role in our local economy and it is important for businesses to get together and network for more effective working, especially during these difficult economic times. We are proud to work with the tourism sector and have a dedicated team who are available to provide support.”

Latest figures from Tourism South East, the official tourism board for South East England, show that tourism-related spending brought in £224.6 million to West Oxfordshire in 2007, with almost 3.7 million visitors to the District that year.

Amanda Baker, Sales Manager at Eynsham Hall, said: “We are grateful for the Council's support. In addition to offering facilities for conferences and training courses, we organise events open to the public as well offering the venue for weddings, Christmas, birthday parties and christenings. We appreciate the importance of encouraging people to come in and look around, especially so in the current climate and we thought the open afternoon would be good for everyone to share ideas. It was a huge success”

The event at Eynsham Hall followed an open afternoon in April at Caswell House, Brize Norton, for the owners of bed and breakfasts, hotels and other tourism accommodation in West Oxfordshire, organised by the Council and attended by Witney MP, the Rt Hon David Cameron.

There are 220 tourism accommodation establishments in the District, ranging from bed and breakfasts to hotels and camping and caravanning sites.

As well as supporting the sector through investment in tourism services and development, the Council operates Visitor Information Centres in Burford, Witney and Woodstock, and runs a dedicated tourism website, www.oxfordshirecotswolds.org.

The website also contains information for tourism businesses, including details of free training and workshops, and a meetings and events diary.

The Council's Tourism Team can be contacted on 01993 861080.

Posted : 26/06/2009 16:58:56

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