May 24 2013 Latest news:
By Richard Wood
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
BUSINESS owners have joined together to discuss how to promote the picturesque Waveney Valley.
Guest house owners, food and drink producers and tourism groups were among those joined by councillors as they looked at how to increase awareness of the area and all it has to offer on a wider scale.
Destination Waveney Valley: The Waveney Valley Tourism Forum saw 80 people unite at South Elmham Hall, near Harleston, as they heard from speakers about a logo and new website for the area, and how to promote each other in the future.
Ben Potterton, chairman of the Waveney Valley Tourism Forum, said the conference was about getting businesses to work together to dramatically improve the local economy across Beccles, Bungay, Diss, Eye, Halesworth, Harleston and Loddon. He said: “It is through the strength of our partnerships that we can give the Waveney Valley its own identity, which it so deserves. But can we also begin the journey in making it a destination of choice?”
The event was part of the Waveney Valley Identity Project, which is a joint initiative between Mid Suffolk, South Norfolk and Waveney District Council, with funding by The Rural Development Programme for England.
Mr Potterton continued: “I think it is quite clear that local businesses want to promote the Waveney Valley, rather than being seen as a piece of Norfolk and Suffolk.”
Pat Holtom, chairman of the Waveney Valley Local Action Group, said they wanted as many people as possible to put the new logo on their websites or letterheads.
Keynote speaker Michelle Payne added it was vital to promote the region in a cost-effective way.
“I think it is incredibly difficult to get it out there. We all love Waveney Valley, what it is and how much we love being here, but it is about letting others know about it,” she said.
Another conference is planned for the autumn and the food and drink festival will return for two weeks later in the year.
Visit the website on www.visitwaveneyvalley.co.uk.