BUSINESSES from across Yorkshire will be attending a conference in York this month to share their views on the impact of Brexit and the opportunities and challenges facing the county and the UK’s tourism industry.
Organiser Make It York is inviting businesses to attend York’s annual Tourism Conference to get the latest tips for future-proofing.
It will take place on January 25 at York Racecourse, and will be hosted by BBC Presenter Phil Bodmer.
Make It York is promising a stellar line-up of speakers. For the first time, the conference is free to attend for members of Visit York.
The 2017 conference theme - ‘York in a Changing Europe’ - will highlight opportunities businesses can take advantage of in a post-Brexit climate, as well as offer key insights and a range of interactive and engaging workshops from tourism experts.
Steve Brown, Managing Director, Make It York, will kick start the conference by sharing the latest in York’s tourism successes, revealing the latest statistics, as well as announcing plans for York’s tourism campaign in 2017.
Speaking about the conference, Mr Brown said: “We begin 2017 in an optimistic mood. Hotel occupancy levels are strong and visits to attractions are back on a par with 2015.
“Our conference theme will bring about a healthy debate on our future in Europe, how the tourism sector can grow and about new opportunities in markets like China, where the city and region is already hugely popular.
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"It’s important we look ahead to how businesses can make the most of opportunities that arise from a post-Brexit-Europe.”
Guest speakers from some of the city’s top tourist attractions will also announce their plans for the New Year, including Jorvik, York Museums Trust, York Army Museum and Castle Howard.
Speakers include Jane Lady Gibson, chairman of Make It York, Richard Nicholls, head of Britain research at VisitBritain, Sir Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire.
Sir Gary will share insights from the success of positioning Yorkshire as a cycling destination and how world-class events are putting the county firmly on the map.
About 200 tourism businesses from York and Yorkshire are expected to attend.
Tickets include lunch and networking opportunities. Places are limited and only 50 remain. Tickets are free for Visit York members and priced at £50 for non-members. For details on how to book, visit www.visityork.org/members/events