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Workshop 6: The Experience Economy

Workshop 6. 26 October, 12:30 - 13:30


Challenges for the region

  • Seem that tourism has neglected and ignored communities in development. Tourism money should be invested locally to buy affordable buildings or develop locally developed or regulated tourist attractions and services.

  • Night-time economy is missing, developing that as an offering - areas such as Conwy but over the North Wales region.

  • Sustainable Transport needs addressing, and timelines aligned with this; there is not much detail on transport in the document.

  • Consideration of Electric Vehicle charging infrastructure is also important.

  • Decisions around Red/Blue route and a quick decision on this is important and could dramatically change the REF delivery.

  • Timelines are an important consideration and where they are placed in the document.

  • There is an opportunity for 12 month/all year-round visitors. There is a need to differentiate between indoor and outdoor attractions and the difficulties in attracting tourism to outdoor attractions in later months

  • Need to consider the tourism offer in terms of the people resident in the region which creates its own market.


 


Opportunities for the region

  • Need to invest tourism money back into the communities to ensure sustainability

  • Not a lot of music festivals – this could be an opportunity across the region of North Wales.

  • Rebranding is needed to attract food and drink talents in the area.

  • Opportunity to set a similar standard between experiences across the sector with some kind of kite mark and for this to be policed robustly.

  • Year round offering for outdoor and indoor activities, and both have an equal draw.

  • A need to invest in opportunities to increase traffic from both a local and tourist perspective. An opportunity for amenities to be more adaptable at certain times of the year.

  • Opportunities for film production locations, could be a leader in moving forward

  • Consider evening out demand and stop its decline, ensuring all people get to them.


Priorities for the region to pave the way for 2040 vision

  • Secure a transport network that meets the needs of visitors and locals; investing in existing systems such as the rural railways; it needs to be available, accessible, reliable and integrated transport.

  • Focus on securing a long-term strategy and sustainable infrastructure that includes community involvement, before embarking on marketing and developing expensive, glossy projects

  • Employment: recognition, opportunities for profession; recognise that the tourism sector is a profession and not a job of last resort; there is a need to look at training and professional qualifications associated with this economy.

  • Need timelines – to deliver a roadmap.

  • Cross Border working is a priority - opportunities and challenges in cross border collaboration e.g. work with the Mersey Dee Alliance

  • Recognise the role communities can play; support for community enterprises need to be more explicit i.e. what and how.

  • Recognise the night-time economy offer; competition from other regions is high, attract branded hotels for night-time events;

  • All year round offer not just in the winter and summer especially indoor attractions.

  • Strengthening the creative industry, to ensure the end-to-end production process remains in the region.


Future collaborative working principles for the region

  • Share good practice, support and inspiration among the communities. The ability, desire, understanding and enthusiasms already exists but resources and co-operation are needed to put it into practice to develop and own local tourism

  • Need to encourage and support the large number of successful businesses and entrepreneurs who are rooted in our communities to invest in our communities by employing local people, share local resources and spend locally.

  • Measuring the success and value of the industry is not about focusing on growth or GDP.

  • Share and disseminate existing good practice and gain confidence in owning tourism in their area and taking pride in their natural resources, culture and their language

  • Undertake a tourism investment study to find out what works, what is value for money and what is sustainable; learn from other countries/places, identify models that work.

  • Collaboration needs to be at ground level where it is more effective and engaging - currently it is at the strategic level. LA to work on the collaborative level. Need to assign somebody on collaborative working.

  • Digital platform other than physical meetings to be used for cross sector/regional networking

  • Partnerships e.g. working with the Mersey Dee Alliance (MDA) is important; avoid duplication and recognise and encompass cross border issues.

  • REF needs to include actions and issues and more than just a strategic document.

  • Timelines for both public and private sectors needed to promote a collaborative approach.



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