Tourism bosses step-up campaign

TOURISM bosses in Suffolk are supporting British Tourism Week by launching a number of initiatives for visitors and industry operators.

TOURISM bosses in Suffolk are supporting British Tourism Week by launching a number of initiatives for visitors and industry operators.

The visitor economy in Suffolk is worth an estimated £1.084billion a year and is responsible for 10% of jobs in the county.

During British Tourism Week, the Suffolk Tourism Partnership will be attending the British Travel Trade Fair in Birmingham and launching this year's Days Out in Suffolk attractions guide.

Events in the county also include brochure exchange days for accommodation businesses so that they appreciate where to send visitors and what is taking place during the year.

British Tourism Week, which starts on Monday and runs until March 18, has been developed by national tourism body VisitBritain with the aim of raising the profile of the UK's tourism industry, especially in terms of its importance to the national economy.

Last year was the first year of the initiative which involved MP's at Westminster being encouraged to sign a pledge card supporting tourism in Britain.

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Chris Bushby, executive director of the Suffolk Agricultural Association and chairman of the Suffolk Tourism Partnership, said: “British Tourism Week is a new initiative and getting support from the constituency MP's in Westminster is vital in terms of maintaining and hopefully encouraging more recognition for the country's tourism industry.”

n The East of England has two national finalists in the 2008 Enjoy England Awards for Excellence, organised by VisitBritain.

Strattons Hotel at Swaffham in Norfolk - a Queen Anne which was once home to Howard Carter, who discovered Tutankhamun's tomb - is nominated alongside rivals from Hampshire and Gloucestershire for the Sustainable Tourism award.

And the Imperial War Museum, Duxford, is one of three finalists in the Large Visitor Attraction category, where it is up against Tullie House Museum & Art Gallery in Carlisle, and the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.

The winners will be announced on Wednesday, April 23, during a ceremony at St George's Hall, Liverpool, in celebration of St George's Day and Liverpool's status as European Capital of Culture 2008.