The board is carrying out monthly meetings to share data, insight and planning, which will continue throughout the Covid-19 response and recovery period, to shape regional and national policy and support for the sector.

What does the Board do?

Supported by the West Midlands Growth Company, the Board is currently re-focusing the  region’s Tourism Strategy and continues to be the voice for the area’s tourism sector and advocate for funding from government.

In the short term, this focuses on the measures needed from VisitBritain and government to ensure business survival in the region. Longer term, this includes economic development recovery planning, and developing a bid to be one of the UK’s tourism zones, which aims to raise productivity through activity including building careers, extending the season and improving the local offer. 

The Board also championed the inaugural West Midlands Tourism Awards, which took place in late February and recognised the region’s finest tourist organisations. The Awards crowned 15 venues from categories such as Experience of the Year, Large Hotel of the Year, and the Taste of England award, which now go through to the national Awards for Excellence.

Who is involved?

Chaired by Fiona Allan, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of Birmingham Hippodrome, the Board comprises representatives from across the West Midlands. It features experts from sports, culture, conferencing and hotel venues, attractions, transport, education, and the public sector. 
Board members include:

  • Vice Chair: Nick Blofeld, Divisional Director of Warwick Castle
  • Vice Chair: Sam Watson, General Manager at Selfridges & Co. and Chair of Retail BID Birmingham
  • John Angus, Managing Director of Park Regis Birmingham
  • Stuart Cain, Chief Executive (Venue) of Wasps
  • Lindsey Flynn, Chief Executive at WELL Associates and Board Member of the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership
  • Cllr Patrick Harley, Leader of Dudley Council
  • Kelly Haslehurst, Marketing Director, Conventions and Exhibitions at NEC Group
  • Michael Holland, Head of Marketing at Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games Organising Committee
  • Sally Ievers, Consultant - Industry Engagement, University College Birmingham  
  • Liz Johnson, Director, West Midlands and Museum Collection Development at Arts Council England
  • Andrew Lovett, Chief Executive of Black Country Living Museum
  • Roger Mendonca, Chief Operating Officer at West Midlands Growth Company
  • Laura McMillan, Director of Operations and Legacy at Coventry City of Culture Trust
  • Helen Peters, Chief Executive of Shakespeare’s England
  • Truchio Powell, Creative and Events Director at Aston Performing Arts Academy

For more information about the West Midlands Regional Board for Tourism, please contact tourism@wmgrowth.com.

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