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Michael Hirst adds weight to Tourism Industry Council

Collaboration between industry and government steps up as Michael Hirst becomes permanent member of the council

Pictured: Michael Hirst

The Tourism Industry Council has added representation from the business visits and events sector as it steps up its collaboration between government and the events industry.

Michael Hirst, chairman of the Business Visits and Events Partnership and deputy chairman of the Events Industry Board, has been invited by tourism minister John Glen to become a permanent member of the council.

Michael Hirst said: “It’s clear that business events and events more generally should be a big part of the government’s programme to push forward the economy. The industry now has in place strong representation through its umbrella body, the Business Visits and Events Partnership, a joined up approach with government on the Events Industry Board, a voice in parliament through the All Party Parliamentary Group and now the opportunity to make a contribution to the wider visitor economy on the Tourism Industry Council.”

The council will also oversee the proposed tourism sector deal, which it is hoped will offer strong opportunities for the events industry. It is also hoped that business visit and events could play a crucial role in boosting productivity by filling unsold capacity and extending the tourism season year-round. Proposals include a national programme of events to showcase Britain’s business and cultural excellence and expertise.

Nick De Bois, chair of the Events Industry Board, said: “I am very pleased that the Events Industry Board will be represented on the Tourism Industry Council and know that the events sector will see this as significant recognition of the government's continuing interest and support for their work within the wider UK economy as we prepare for the opportunities and challenges ahead.”

Many of the current initiatives being developed between industry and government, will be debated and discussed at the first Business of Events Senior Leadership Forum. The forum, which is being supported by both the Business Visits & Events Partnership and VisitBritain, will see more than 150 senior leaders from across the UK events industry meet at the QEII Centre in London on Friday 3 November. On the eve of the forum, a reception and private dinner will take place at One Great George Street, Westminster, attended by John Glen and members of both Parliament and the Lords as well as officials from across government and representatives of leading event industry organisations.

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