Cumbria Tourism is calling on a range of organisations to help shape a new five-year Destination Management Plan (DMP) aimed at shaping collective priorities and resources to manage Cumbria’s visitor economy and supporting the county’s future growth as a great place to live, work, visit and study.
As a newly-accredited Local Visitor Economy Partnership (LVEP), Cumbria Tourism is tasked with leading the development of the new county-wide plan – working closely with a wide range of stakeholders including businesses, local government, Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership, communities, transport providers, public sector organisations and more.
The process gets underway this week with a special workshop event at the University of Cumbria’s Ambleside campus, where a range of partners are sharing their initial opinions and expertise.
Over the coming months, Cumbria Tourism will lead an extensive programme of stakeholder engagement to gather more detailed information both regionally and nationally, including a second workshop in November.
Cumbria’s new Destination Management Plan will then be officially unveiled at the beginning of 2024, to coincide with Cumbria Tourism’s 50th anniversary year.
Chairman of Cumbria Tourism, Dan Visser, said: “This will be a critically important strategic document for our visitor economy. The new Destination Management Plan won’t ‘belong’ to Cumbria Tourism; it will be a collective, county-wide plan detailing shared priorities and resources to manage our world-class destination between now and the end of the decade.
“Together we are looking to shape an ambitious – but achievable – plan with defined roles and actions for organisations, businesses and individuals. This will help add real value and lay the foundations for Cumbria’s future growth and success as a great place to live, work and visit.”
Councillor Jonathan Brook, Leader of Westmorland and Furness Council and Cabinet Member for strategic partnerships and the economy, said: “Westmorland and Furness Council is a brand-new council. This provides a huge opportunity to create a fresh vision for our communities and residents, and work with partners to deliver on that vision. Most importantly, we are committed to working to ensure that Westmorland and Furness is a great place to live, work and thrive.
“Working on this Destination Management Plan, with such a wide range of stakeholders will unleash enormous potential. Together we can achieve so much more and ensure there is an integrated and long-term plan, with a clear focus on the needs of residents, businesses and visitors. We look forward to continuing the successful partnership working between local authorities and Cumbria Tourism for the benefit of all, and to maximise and enhance our cultural assets, places, heritage and landscapes.”
Cumberland Council’s portfolio holder for Vibrant and Healthy Places, Cllr Anne Quilter, added: “We welcome the opportunity to work with Cumbria Tourism and tourism partners to mould the next Destination Management Plan so that it supports sustainable tourism development in all parts of the county.
“In particular, we wish to see attract and disperse strategies at the heart of the plan so that visitors are encouraged to seek out less well visited parts of our area and find the hidden gems. Our area has lots to see and offer and we will work closely with tourism and economic partners to widen our appeal to visitors and promote the hidden gems located within our Cumberland area.”