From its impressive rolling landscapes, to hosting stellar names from the world of jazz at its annual eclectic festival, Wales Office Minister Baroness Jenny Randerson will today (9 August) see how Wales’ tourism and hospitality sector is thriving in Brecon.
The visit will begin with a visit to Crickhowell Tourist and Information Centre (TIC) where she will accompany MP for Brecon & Radnorshire, Roger Williams on a tour of the centre, and meet Town Clerk, Jane Johnston, Councillor Hilary Macaulay and other volunteers.
Baroness Randerson will then head to local tourism attractions Cantref Farm and Brecon Beacons holiday cottages.
At the farm, the Minister will meet staff and visitor attractions ranging from the riding centre to the animal barn. At the holiday cottages, the Minister will meet owner Elizabeth Daniels to hear what challenges she faces running a small business in rural Wales throughout the year.
This week also sees the start of the annual heritage and musical event, the Brecon Jazz Festival. The festival is an opportunity for emerging Welsh jazz talent to showcase their talent amongst international leading jazz artists such as Django Bates, Jools Holland and Courtney Pine.
Baroness Randerson will join other guests where she will attend the Brecon Jazz Festival reception at Guildhall Council Chamber, and attend the Courtney Pine Presents House of Legends show later that evening.
Tourism and hospitality plays an important role in delivering economic growth for the UK and Wales.
In 2012, there were 9.6 million overnight trips to Wales by GB residents, with the associated spend estimated at £1,588 million. In 2011, Wales attracted 879,000 international visitors to its shores, spending £328 million.
Baroness Randerson said:
While I know the Brecon area well, there are so many places and attractions that I’ve yet to discover.
I am looking forward to meeting with industry officials, and those running small businesses that depend on tourism, to see how these attractions have benefitted from the recent period of glorious weather we have been experiencing.
I am also looking forward to attending the opening night of the Brecon Jazz Festival. Some of the most famous names in jazz and many of the finest jazz musicians from around the world have enjoyed playing at Brecon. I hope people come in their droves to attend the festivities and take in the excellent range of entertainment on offer.
Following on from the success of last year’s Olympics, the UK Government has launched the GREAT campaign to market Britain at its best in terms of tourism, trade, creativity and investment to the rest of the world.
A key challenge for Wales is capturing a larger share of international tourism spend coming into the UK and it is essential that the UK and Welsh Government work together to achieve this.
Image courtesy of World of Oddy on Flickr.