This year’s campaign to drive the Wales tourism industry higher up the political agenda will be launched on May 11 as ‘A celebration of our tourism stars’.
The Wales Tourism Alliance (WTA), the voice of the tourism industry in Wales, is co-ordinating Wales Tourism Week from May 15-21 in association with Visit Wales and the tourism industry.
Held annually to raise the profile of the industry and to highlight its huge revenue generating value and the job and career opportunities it provides, the theme aims to highlight the stars of tourism in Wales.
The WTA and its partners are also engaging pan Wales with Further and Higher Education to talk about opportunities where the industry can collaborate to encourage more youngsters into the industry, particularly in the light of the potential impact of BREXIT.
However, it is not only about the under 25s. Wales Tourism Week is about demonstrating to people of all ages that tourism and the wider visitor economy offer a rewarding and lifelong career with abundant opportunities for employment that suits every level of aspiration.
There will be a week of co-ordinated activities engaging with politicians, senior government officials, colleges, schools, businesses, tourism associations and destination management organisations.
Adrian Barsby, WTA chair, said:
“We want tourism associations and businesses to engage and showcase the fantastic breadth and depth of talent we have here in Wales. This is what really counts and what makes us able to deliver that vital economic contribution to Wales and our local communities. Unlike other industries, tourism benefits reach all parts of Wales’.
The week-long series of events start with a launch in the Senedd on May 11 and finish with a tourism summit in Mid Wales on May 18. The summit will be opened with a keynote speech from Ken Skates, Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure.
The Economy Secretary said:
“Tourism touches all parts of Wales and the geographical spread of employment generated by the tourism sector is one of its key strengths. It is the number-one industry in some rural communities, sustaining the local economy and culture.
“Tourism makes a vital contribution to the Welsh economy and is one of the Welsh Government’s priority sectors to grow the economy. Wales Tourism Week plays an important part in raising the profile of tourism as a key employer and a career. I look forward to meeting representatives from the industry during the summit next month.”
The summit theme is internationalism and will provide insight into future trends and challenges facing the industry. With the support of ColegauCymru, Further and Higher Education colleges and universities will be celebrating their international links with programmes of work experience and learning journeys. This includes both Welsh students travelling the world and our colleges and universities hosting students from around the world.
In recognition of the international theme, the Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns and Under Secretary of State Guto Bebb will host a reception at Ty Gwydyr in London on May 16 to celebrate tourism in Wales.
A full listing of the events taking place can be found on the Wales Tourism Alliance website http://www.wta.org.uk/wales-tourism-week.html
The WTA, along with its partners, is calling on tourism associations, trade organisations and businesses across the country to undertake events that highlight the importance of the industry over the week. Any organisation wishing to add an event to the list should email firstname.lastname@example.org with details, including the date, time and location.