Tourism leaders in Mid-Wales have welcomed the Prime Minister’s decision to spend a short walking holiday in the region in the run up to Easter.
Theresa May and her husband, Philip, enjoyed a five-day walking break in Snowdonia, where they spent money in local shops and attended a Palm Sunday service at St Mary’s Church in Dolgellau.
Among the items she bought when shopping in Dolgellau were two sterling silver rings made by Barmouth jeweller Anna Hicks and Welsh slate coasters at the Celf Aran Arts shop in Dolgellau.
It’s believed to be the fourth time the Prime Minister, who is a keen walker, has stayed in the area, which is very popular with visitors from the Midlands and North West England.
She and her husband were among thousands of visitors who have escaped to the tranquil beauty of Snowdonia to recharge their batteries in the lead up to the Easter weekend. Dolgellau has welcomed several other celebrity visitors recently, including comedians Julie Walters, Greg Davies and John Bishop, to name but three.
Rowland Rees-Evans, chairman of MWT Cymru, which represents around 600 tourism and hospitality businesses across Mid Wales, said the region extended a warm welcome to the Prime Minister and her husband.
“It’s brilliant for the Mid-Wales tourism industry when someone as high profile as the Prime Minister chooses to holiday in the region,” he said. “Hopefully, the publicity associated with her visit will help to attract many more visitors this year.”
Sharon Peake-Jones, a MWT Cymru director who runs Pandy Isaf Country House Bed and Breakfast business in Dolgellau, said the Prime Minister’s visit was a great boost for tourism in Dolgellau and surrounding area. She stressed that there are numerous events held in the town during the year by local businesses.
“I have read that the Prime Minister loves walking, which is good news for us because Southern Snowdonia is an ideal place for walkers,” said Sharon, who is a keen walker herself. “Her decision to spend a holiday here helps to raise the profile of Mid Wales as a destination.
“We welcome visitors from America and other parts of the world and without exception they are blown away by Mid Wales. They love the diversity of the scenery – the coast, lakes and mountains – and everybody raves about the quality of the food.”
During a media interview earlier this month, the Prime Minister said:
“Walking in Wales is an opportunity to get out and about and see scenery and clear your mind and your thinking.
“We stay in a hotel and try to walk every day. Walking is about relaxing, getting exercise and fresh air.”
A spokesperson for Number 10 said: “The Prime Minister and her husband are taking a short UK break away from the office and are being briefed and updated as required. She is a regular visitor to Snowdonia to go walking.”
Another favourite area where the Mays enjoy walking is the Brecon Beacons. For more information about holidays in Mid Wales visit www.visitmidwales.co.uk