LTB business tourism plan presented for LDA approval

London Tourist Board and Convention Bureau (LTB) has put together an action plan to develop business tourism in the capital. As CIT was going to press, the LTB was in the process of presenting its three-year plan to the London Development Agency (LDA). Once the plan gets approval, the LTB will work at dividing the points into sustainable time scales. “We want to look at what is achievable in one year, three years and the long-term so work can start immediately,” said LTB head Mady Keup. The action points will fall into four categories: quality; infrastructure; marketing; and competitiveness. The plan follows the first London Leadership Forum on Business Tourism, organised by the LTB and LDA, which was attended by nearly 100 industry delegates. “We listened to feedback from different sectors and put together a comprehensive plan,” said Keup. “We are all working together to bring business to London and drive the C&I sector forward.” Business Tourism Partnership (BTP) chairman Michael Hirst said the forum was encouraging. “There is unanimous support for the work started by the LDA on promoting London, and we are now seeing this come to fruition.” Hirst expects the action points to include the plans to develop an international convention centre, the Mayor playing a more pivotal role in conference bids and in welcoming conference delegates, and working towards packaging the capital more efficiently to business visitors. Earls Court & Olympia Group chief executive Andrew Morris said the development of a London convention centre should be a priority for government and business. Following the forum he expressed interest in bidding for Kensington’s Commonwealth Conference and Events Centre, which is currently for sale at an estimated £20m. But he admitted there were planning restrictions and it was “too small to provide the necessary 5,000-seat auditorium”.

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