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Gloucestershire Business News

Cotswold businesses speak to local leaders about the impact of COVID-19

Local MPs and councillors are using English Tourism Week to visit local businesses to shine a light on how they're recovering from the impact of COVID-19.

They've been invited by Cotswolds Tourism - the destination management organisation for the Cotswolds - who will show the guests the Cotswolds are now well placed to welcome visitors back to the myriad market towns.

English Tourism Week runs until May 31 and gives tourism bodies like Cotswolds Tourism a great opportunity to promote the importance, value and vast contribution the sector makes to the Cotswolds region and the UK economy.

Tourism spend plays a vital role in driving the wider visitor economy with local jobs and over a billion pounds is spent by visitors across the wider Cotswolds region. For Cotswold district area 17% of jobs relate to tourism and visitors spent around £360 million pounds in 2019.

As well as highlighting the opportunities created by the 'Uncover the Cotswolds' and 'Real Cotswolds' campaigns, the week-long event gives Cotswolds Tourism the chance to shout about the incredible tourism offer in the 800 square mile Cotswolds area of outstanding natural beauty.

A number of events are planned and local businesses are being encouraged to help spread the word via social media using the hashtags #herefortourism and #englishtourismweek21.

As restrictions ease and tourism-related businesses start to reopen, many are looking to recover strongly from the impacts of lockdown and wider pandemic as visitors return.

Cllr Tony Dale, Cotswold District Council cabinet member for economy and skills, visited The Tetbury Goods shed in Tetbury & Wild Carrot along with local MP Geoffrey Clifton-Brown.

Cllr Dale said: "Tourism plays a huge role in our local economy and many of our tourism-related businesses have really struggled over the past year.

"I would like to thank our businesses for the amazing resilience they have demonstrated and these visits have shown how so many have adapted and continued to trade in new and innovative ways which is brilliant to see.

"It is important local leaders listen and it is fundamental to how we operate as a council. We have done all we can as a local council to support our businesses during the pandemic and the feedback I have gained from these visits will form part of our strategy for green economic growth in the Cotswolds, helping us rebound and build on what we have."

During the visit to Wild Carrot, Cotswolds MP Sir Geoffrey Clifton Brown enjoyed an electric bike ride and discovered more about the development plans for glamping and sustainability.

Sir Geoffrey said: "I am delighted to wholeheartedly support VisitEngland's English Tourism Week campaign. I have been out and about in my constituency over the last few weeks visiting a range of tourist venues in the Cotswolds and discussing innovative ideas that have developed during lockdown by those that run these attractions.

"All we need now is visitors to make the Cotswolds their destination of choice for their holiday this year."

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