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New tourism head

PUBLISHED: 13:54 09 January 2008 | UPDATED: 13:38 21 May 2010

DAVID Hunter is aiming to give north Norfolk tourism industry a stronger voice in his new role as head of this important economic sector.

Mr Hunter, well-known as clerk of the course of Fakenham Racecourse, has taken over the reins of the Tourism Round Table, part of the North Norfolk Business Forum.

DAVID Hunter is aiming to give north Norfolk tourism industry a stronger voice in his new role as head of this important economic sector.

Mr Hunter, well-known as clerk of the course of Fakenham Racecourse, has taken over the reins of the Tourism Round Table, part of the North Norfolk Business Forum.

And one of his first tasks as chairman will be to lead the project team organising the 2008 Day Out in North Norfolk tourism promotion event which this year will take on a new format.

Traditionally staged in the spring over two days, the event is to move to October this year, and will be for one day aimed at people from other parts of the country involved in the tourism industry. Holiday companies and coach operators will be invited to the event to see what the north Norfolk area has to offer.

The change has come about because it was widely considered that the spring was too late to promote the area to those from outside and in October they would be planning their UK tour programmes for 2009.

Mr Hunter, will be bringing a wealth of experience to his new role, having overseen numerous successful racing seasons at Fakenham.

Under his guidance the Fakenham course has also seen an increase in public use as a venue for a variety of events, the latest being the successful Rock at the Racecourse last summer.

Mr Hunter also continues his involvement with the British Paralympic Dressage team. As their performance manager he has responsibility for arranging, organising and managing people, horses and equipment for the team when it competes in Hong Kong in September.

Mr Hunter believes that north Norfolk tourism will become increasingly important all year round, with the quieter off-season months attracting greater numbers of people to places like the area's coastal beaches for bird watching and walking.

One of the ideas being looked at is staging a tourism conference in 2009 where the whole industry in Norfolk, including north Norfolk, can be discussed and other parts of the country can be looked at to see what can be learnt from them.

“Tourism is such an important part of the Norfolk economy, and we involved in tourism promotion have to make sure that we keep ahead of the game and ensure that the special and unique qualities of our area are promoted as extensively as possible,” said Mr Hunter.

The group is also keen to hear from those working in the tourism industry about what support they need,

such as staff training.

Mr Hunter is also aware of the ongoing discussions regarding local government changes with unitary authorities and boundary changes and the impact they may have on tourism.

“We need to make sure that tourism in Norfolk, and north Norfolk in particular, is given due credit when budgets are considered because the industry is a huge economic contributor to the county,” he said.

“It is early days for me at the helm and I only have a toe under the table at the moment, but I am conscious of the enthusiasm of other members of the team and feel we can establish an effective working relationship with other groups in Norfolk.”

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