Sustainability and Innovation key issues for Eden’s flagship Tourism Summit

Businesses from across Eden and Cumbria are invited to attend a high profile tourism event at Center Parcs, Whinfell Forest on Wednesday 19 October 2022, 10am to 1pm.

The annual Eden Tourism Summit is taking place in person for the first time since before the pandemic and some of the tourism industry’s most topical issues will be discussed.

Organisers, Eden District Council’s (EDC) Economic Development and Tourism team, have attracted a wide range of speakers for the event including Tim Narey, Project Director at Eden Project North, Charlie Rogers, Consultant at Small World Consulting, Helen Tate, Tourism Research Analyst at Cumbria Tourism and Glen Franklin, Village Director, Center Parcs, Whinfell Forest. Together they will bring a national and regional perspective of the latest ideas, thoughts and opinions within the UK’s dynamic and forward looking visitor economy. A panel discussion will allow delegates to put a whole range of questions to the event’s speakers. Delegates will have the chance to network over a buffet lunch and Center Parcs are also offering the chance for an exclusive walking tour of the village.

The summit is just one of many initiatives that EDC’s Economic and Tourism team are running this year as part of its Inspiring Eden work programme.

“Recognising the important role of the visitor economy within Eden I am delighted to be speaking at this year’s Eden Tourism Summit” said Cllr Virginia Taylor, Leader of Eden District Council. “Eden District Council’s Inspiring Eden economic development programme is providing funding for a wide range of projects that will benefit tourism in the area – from improved transport connectivity to providing changing spaces for visitors with limited mobility. Our programme aims to help and support businesses grow and adapt, enabling them to make a valuable contribution to the area’s dynamic economy.”

The event, chaired by Jim Walker, Chair of the Eden Tourism Network and President of Cumbria Tourism, will be a poignant occasion as it will mark 10-years since the first Eden Tourism Summit which took place at Lowther Castle in 2012. It will also be the last tourism summit staged by Eden District Council before the district becomes part of the new Westmorland and Furness Council from 1 April 2023.

Over the last 10 years, tourism summits staged by Eden District Council have discussed a huge range of topical issues affecting the area’s visitor economy. As the sector emerges from Covid-19 it is felt sustainability and innovation will be key drivers for economic growth and security.

“Eden Tourism Summit has been a highlight over many years for tourism businesses in the District, an essential look back at what the main season has delivered and a vital opportunity for all involved to plan for the year ahead” said Jim Walker, Chair of Eden Tourism Network. “For the first time since the pandemic the 2022 version will be in person and coupled with the extraordinary challenges we now face in the visitor economy it will be even more relevant than ever before.

In response Eden Tourism have assembled a stellar line up of speakers to provide an informative, inspiring and insightful mini conference with regional and national speakers, hosted by Center Parcs with a rare chance to hear how this national operator has weathered the storms of the last few years and what is planned for the future. There is no doubt the time ahead for tourism businesses in Eden is going to be very challenging. I strongly recommend that businesses join us to get the best intelligence and the most useful experiences from the case studies from the summit to best prepare for whatever lies ahead.”

As hosts of the last Eden Tourism Summit, Center Parcs, Whinfell Forest are delighted to be welcoming delegates to their village in Cumbria’s Eden Valley. “The past 30 months for the tourism sector have undoubtedly been the toughest for a generation” said Glen Franklin, Village Director, Center Parcs Whinfell Forest. “In addition, they have certainly been the toughest during the 10-years of stellar work carried out by Eden Tourism Network. As one chapter closes another begins, and I hope that once the Westmorland and Furness Council is formed, the great work can continue in another guise.”

The Eden Tourism Summit is taking place in collaboration with Eden Tourism Network (ETN). The network comprises of more than 100 representatives from tourism businesses in Eden and provides an opportunity to share information and discuss the latest tourism developments and issues. The group meets quarterly at various locations around the district.

To recognise the important contribution the Eden Tourism Network has made over the years current network members are being offered a free place at the event as a thank you for their support.

Places at the summit for non ETN members are available at £10 including VAT. If you wish to book a place please email: tourism@eden.gov.uk

ENDS

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