The new Chair of the British Tourist Authority visited Staffordshire on Saturday 4th July, as England’s tourism and hospitality industry started to reopen after the Coronavirus lockdown.

Sir Patrick McLoughlin visited Drayton Manor Park, Tamworth, and The Moat House Hotel at Acton Trussell, South Staffordshire, two of the first businesses in the country to gain VisitEngland’s ‘We’re Good To Go’ industry standard.

Organised by Enjoy Staffordshire, the county’s official tourist board, together with national tourism agency VisitBritain/VisitEngland, the trip enabled Sir Patrick to see first-hand how businesses are adapting to reassure employees, local residents, visitors and guests, and give them confidence to return following the easing of lockdown measures.

To acquire the free UK-wide industry standard, Drayton Manor Park and The Moat House, which both reopened on 4th July, introduced measures to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing, such as regular cleaning of rides, limiting visitor numbers, and using apps to order and pay for food and drink.

British Tourist Authority Chair Sir Patrick McLoughlin said:

“I am delighted to visit Staffordshire and mark the reopening of England’s tourism’s industry. I know that local businesses of all sizes across the sector have been working extremely hard preparing to welcome visitors back and to give them a safe and enjoyable experience.

“Millions of jobs and local economies depend on tourism right across the country and the industry needs all of us to make sure it gets back on its feet. We also want visitors to be able to enjoy their day-trips and holidays and to support businesses to be confident they have the correct procedures in place and are ‘good to go’.

“Our priority is to make sure tourism rebounds to once again become one of the most successful sectors of the UK economy so I also encourage people to explore what is on their doorstep and to support their local tourism businesses and visitor attractions. The industry is looking forward to welcoming you back.”

The ‘We’re Good To Go’ industry standard has been developed by VisitEngland, in partnership with Tourism Northern Ireland, VisitScotland and Visit Wales, with input from more than 40 industry bodies including UKHospitality and the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions.

More than 18,000 businesses from across the UK’s tourism sector have signed up to the scheme since its launch.

The self-assessment includes specific guidelines for sectors including accommodation, visitor attractions, restaurants and pubs, business conference and events venues and tour and coach operators with signposting to further industry and trade association guidance as required.

Further information on the standard, and details of how to apply, are available at https://www.visitbritain.org/business-advice/were-good-go-industry-standard

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For more information please contact Richard Swancott on 07468 468729 or email richard.swancott@staffordshire.gov.uk

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