​NCTA submission to the Government’s Select Inquiry on Tourism

NCTA submission to the Government’s Select Inquiry on Tourism

The New Year has kicked off with a thought-provoking start for the NCTA, with director Samantha Richardson providing oral evidence on coastal tourism to the Government’s Select Inquiry on Tourism today, Tuesday 6 January. To see her evidence click here.

With nearly one in three of all new jobs created within the tourism industry in the past three years, the sector has risen rapidly on the Government’s agenda. And it’s not hard to see why.

Deloitte’s Tourism: Jobs and Growth report published by VisitBritain at the end of 2013, forecast an annual growth rate of 3.8 per cent to 2025, significantly faster than the UK economy overall. If that prediction is correct, Britain’s total tourism industry will be worth more than £257 billion by that year, employing around 11 per cent of the total workforce.

But according to a report published last month by the training organisation People 1st, hospitality employers are finding it increasingly tough to recruit skilled and entry level roles, claiming applicants lack the relevant skills, experience and attitude.

So what needs to be done and how can the Government support industry growth? We put forward a number of proposals in our submission to the Select Inquiry committee. In summary:

The NCTA supports the continuation of the Tourism Council, set up last year under the chairmanship of Tourism Minister Helen Grant. Comprising key industrialists from the hotel and attraction sector, the industry now has a real opportunity to be heard.

The continuation of projects funded by the Coastal Communities Fund. Projects to date have already had a major impact on coastal destinations, we believe this funding needs to continue.

To address the skills shortage, we believe the Government needs to review the provision of funding for training and skills to ensure it benefits small and medium-sized enterprises.

We also believe the tourism industry’s apprenticeships programme should be assessed to ensure it meets the industry needs adequately.

To read our full submission and suggestions on tackling the decline in coastal tourism, click here.

by Sheron Crossman