Giles Watling, MP for Clacton, has welcomed the publication of the Tourism Sector Deal, which will prepare the United Kingdom for an extra 9 million tourists a year, with commitment to build 130,000 hotel rooms across the country by 2025.

The new Tourism Sector Deal also aims to deliver 30,000 apprenticeships per year and will set up a mentoring program aimed at supporting 10,000 employees so that they stay in the sector. Moreover, the Deal will create a new Independent Tourism Data Hub with support from our largest travel companies. Finally, the Deal will ensure that the UK becomes the most accessible tourism destination by 2025, with an aim of increasing the number of international disabled visitors by 33 percent.

In the Clacton constituency, this will increase the number of disabled access points, making the Sunshine Coast a more accessible place for everyone. Delivery of apprenticeships will also target gaps in costal businesses and the deal may help local hotels increase the number of rooms, to allow for more tourists to come and stay in the area. Businesses and local organisations will also be brought together to establish a coordinated strategy for growth in local visitor economy, and to allow for a reduction in the impact of seasonality.

More information about the deal can be found here.

Speaking about the deal, Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright said:

“Today we have set out our vision for the future of UK tourism - a commitment to an industry that is vital for the prosperity of our communities, our businesses and our economy. The UK is one of the world’s greatest destinations and this deal recognises the importance of maximising our natural assets. We are dedicated to supporting life-long careers for those that work in tourism, offering insightful data to help grow businesses and ultimately creating a better visitor experience throughout the UK.”

Giles said:

“I am delighted that the Government has published this deal, and I know that this will deliver real benefits for the Clacton constituency. We have already had investment through the Coastal Communities Fund (£663,000) and the Coastal Revival Fund (£50,000) and this is another way in which the Government is trying to restore our coastal communities as vibrant tourist destinations.

“I have known the constituency since 1957 and I remember our proud history as a tourist destination, with the Grand Hotel, Lodge Hotel, Esplanade Hotel, amongst others. I want to do all I can to ensure that the Sunshine Coast is supported by this Tourism Sector Deal to become a destination once again. No doubt, we have so much to offer, and this deal will help us unlock that potential.”