Shot in arm for local tourism

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AN initial meeting has taken place to look at ways of promoting south Lincolnshire as a tourist destination.

Although tourism is worth about £250million to the economy in the area, since the demise of Visit Lincolnshire more than a year ago, there has been not been an organisation responsible for encouraging more visitors to experience what the unique Fen and Wash area has to offer.

Lincolnshire Chamber of Commerce arranged the meeting, which included delegates from a number of interested groups including Spalding’s Springfields and Water Taxi, South Holland District Council, the Environment Agency, RSPB and Lincolnshire County Council.

David Norton, chief executive of Springfields Horticultural Society, was at the meeting and described it as a “positive step forward”.

He said: “Tourism is still an important element in the economic success that we can expect for the area but there was recognition that if we want to move this forward it is in our own hands.

“Nothing is going to happen overnight but getting people together is the first step.

Chief executive of Lincolnshire Chamber of Commerce Simon Beardsley said it was the first step towards forming a Destination Management Organisation for the south Lincolnshire, Wash and the Fens area.

He said: “The area has a number of assets such as the waterways and The Wash, for example, but also faces a number of challenges, such as the diversity of attraction such as historic buildings and wildlife.

“But there is a lot happening in 2012 such as the Olympics and the Jubillee so we are keen to make sure we move forward as quickly as possible to make the most of those opportunities.”

He said a second meeting would be held within the next couple of weeks.