Working together to achieve world-class results for Peak District & Derbyshire
The overarching message to delegates at Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire’s Annual Tourism Conference on Tuesday was that working together is vital to secure the future success and prosperity of the Peak District and Derbyshire together to continue to create a world-class destination and five-star visitor experience.
Keynote speaker, Television Presenter and Peak District and Derbyshire champion Julia Bradbury, tourist board Managing Director Jo Dilley and Councillor Barry Lewis, Leader of Derbyshire County Council all reinforced the rallying call as the visitor economy gears up for further success in the future.
Julia, the first-ever female President of The Camping and Caravanning Club told around 150 delegates that Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire was listening to what businesses feel they need and responding to it.
“The key is communication, and working together in a collaborative effort is much more successful. When we lived in Sheffield and my family ran a fashion couture shop, we shared clients with local businesses – a win-win for all and very happy customers. Helping and working with and for each other is important. We shouldn’t always think of neighbours as competition.”
“Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire needs businesses to support it through membership. This doesn’t just allow it to bid for funding to deliver workshops and support. The more members it has, the more marketing campaigns it can deliver, both nationally and internationally, to raise the profile of the area and drive visitors here. As co-founders of The Outdoor Guide, my sister Gina and I are proud to be part of this.”
Jo Dilley emphasized the continuing need for close teamwork between the public and private sectors, the tourist board and its Patrons and members, the University of Derby, D2N2, Visit England and VisitBritain.
“By coming together, we are far more powerful,” she said. “Our mission is to make the Peak District and Derbyshire the destination of choice – regionally, nationally and globally.”
“We want to offer a world class experience, encouraging visitors to share and recommend the area as a great place to take a holiday. The visitor economy is currently in very robust shape, and we are confident that next year will be equally, if not more, successful.”
“The income we receive from our public and private partners through grants, patronage and membership is extremely important in our ongoing quest to secure other funding from sources such as the Discover England Fund and the European Development Fund. Since 2016, we have attracted an extra £2.5 million to help us achieve our ambitions.”
Councillor Barry Lewis underlined the key role that the visitor economy plays in Derbyshire County Council’s plans to drive economic growth for both residents and businesses.
“We recognise the fundamental role the tourist board plays in marketing tourism both domestically and internationally – but it is more than this. It is the focal point for business support to the visitor economy sector, and we are delighted to work alongside the team, always striving to help our businesses grow and offer even more excellent services and products to our visitors.”
Councillor Lewis welcomed the formation of the new Derbyshire Culture, Heritage and Tourism Board, chaired by former VisitEngland Chief Executive and Derbyshire-born James Berresford.
The Board has been created to maximise the economic potential of Derbyshire’s unique and distinctive cultural and environmental assets to create an exceptional and thriving destination where people can live, work, visit and invest.
Councillor Lewis also underscored the importance of strategic regional initiatives such as the Midlands Engine and a new East Midlands Strategic Alliance to keep the visitor economy at the heart of Government policy and investment.
The tourist board team also looked forward to its forthcoming Food & Drink Campaign, set to be launched next spring to promote the Peak District and Derbyshire’s diverse and delicious culinary offer, plus a new initiative to develop business tourism, also scheduled to launch in 2019.
This will focus on bringing in new business at traditionally quiet times of year and also midweek, tapping into the potential of the wellbeing and health market and capitalising on the area’s assets as an accessible place where people can work, rest and invest.
Pictured (left to right) are: Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire’s Deputy Director Lindsay Rae; its Managing Director Jo Dilley; Councillor Barry Lewis, Television Presenter Julia Bradbury, tourist board Chairman Paul Jones and Paul Ince of LikeMind Media Ltd.