West Wales sets up marketing initiative

Twenty-five C&I companies in Pembrokeshire have joined forces in a bid to attract more event business to the area. The consortium, the Pembrokeshire Business Tourism Group, aims to build on the success the south west of Wales has experienced in the leisure market by raising its profile as an ideal location for smaller meetings. “We are blessed with being in a fantastic part of the world but one that cannot compete for conference business in terms of convenience of location. Therefore we are pooling our resources to put Pembrokeshire on the map as a niche location for groups willing to go that little bit further,” explained group chairman Andy Middleton. The group is working “hand in hand” with the Welsh Tourist Board and Pembrokeshire County Council. In addition, it is currently waiting for a decision on an application for Objective One funding – a European initiative for areas with a need to grow their GDP. “I am confident we will be successful in our bid for funding,” Middleton said. “Our priority will be to employ a full time coordinator, whose key role will be to raise the destination’s profile among C&I agencies and buyers. “We are also in the process of establishing goals in terms of occupancy and rates.” Business tourism currently accounts for 11% of all trips to Wales but is the highest growing and highest yielding component of overall tourism. “Our members stand out in terms of variety, quality and the nature of activities on offer and although it will be a while before we can measure the long-term success of the initiative, I hope to see a positive effect straight away,” he added.

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