Devon tourism on Westminster agenda for MP
Torbay MP Kevin Foster recently joined representatives of his constituency’s thriving holiday parks industry at a major tourism convention in London.
Mr Foster was the guest of Paignton’s Beverley Holidays at February’s annual conference of the British Holiday & Home Parks Association in London.
Held at the QEII Conference Centre in Westminster, just a short distance from Parliament, the event was attended by representatives from many of Britain’s 3000-plus holiday parks.
The MP was welcomed at the event by Beverley directors Claire Flower, Nicola Furneaux, and Katy Lamsin whose family business is marking its 60th anniversary in 2018.
Started originally by Claire, Nicola and Katy’s grandparents Stanley and Marion in the 1950s, Beverley Holidays is today one of Devon’s most successful park enterprises.
Over the years, the Jeavons family has invested much time and energy into creating high quality surroundings and up-to-the-minute facilities for holiday guests.
Claire told Kevin Foster MP that they were proud to be major players in the tourism economy of East Devon which generates more than £250 million of visitor spending annually.
Almost all of this sum, she said, benefits local businesses and helps to sustain the large number of tourism-dependent job in the Torbay region.
Beverley Holidays itself provides around 150 full and part-time positions in high season, and operates an ambitious training programme for those wanting to make a career in the industry.
The park has won a raft of different national and regional awards for its first-class standards.
At the end of last year Beverley was announced as one of the top three holiday parks in the UK, as voted for by the public in the prestigious British Travel Awards.
Kevin Foster MP said: “It was good to meet with the team from Beverley, and to hear of the recognition they have received for the excellent service they provide to their customers.
“Torbay’s Holiday Parks have for generations welcomed families to our bay, giving many treasured memories of time spent here with their loved ones.
“They still provide the same opportunity for a family holiday today, but with the modern facilities and upgraded standards current tourists expect,” said Mr Foster.
Following his visit, Mr Foster provided his Beverley hosts with a personal tour of his parliamentary chambers at the House of Commons.
“We were delighted that Mr Foster was able to join us for part of the conference, and to learn more about our sector and how it helps draw millions of people to Torbay each year,” said Claire.
“Mr Foster clearly recognises the importance of tourism to South Devon, and is aware of the many challenges as well as opportunities faced by businesses such as ours.
“We are hopeful of another record-breaking season in 2018, and are grateful for the continuing support and encouragement of our MP,” added Claire.
Claire is also involved with supporting various tourism initiatives in the area, including the English Riviera Tourism Bid Company of which she is a non-executive director.