Home Business and economy A pioneering partnership for Liverpool City Region’s tourism sector

A pioneering partnership for Liverpool City Region’s tourism sector

by Lisa Bennett

In a new era for the visitor destination sector, the Liverpool City Region’s six councils, which includes Knowsley, and the Combined Authority are joining forces in a landmark approach to promote the region’s unique cultural offer.

This pioneering partnership will be chaired by Tony Hall CBE, Lord Hall of Birkenhead, and will position the region as one of Europe’s major events capitals, seeking to deliver maximum economic benefit across the city region from its worldwide visitor appeal.

Lord Hall, former Director-General of the BBC and the former Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House, brings a wealth of experience in leading major cultural institutions and civic bodies, combined with his personal roots and passion for the region and culture. He is currently Chairman of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, a Trustee of the National Trust, the Natural History Museum, and the Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra.

Lord Hall will be joined by a 15-strong team of national and regional board members who bring expertise from the worlds of sport, film, music, hospitality, retail and leisure. All will work together to lead, advise, influence and champion the Liverpool City Region as the destination to visit, invest and stage major events in. The new Board will now start shaping a five-year destination management plan which will be launched later this year.

Although yet to be officially named, the new body will be known initially as the Local Visitor Economy Partnership (LVEP) and will work to boost the city region’s £5bn-a-year visitor economy, which employs around 51,000 people.

Around 60 million people flock to the area every year to enjoy its cultural, musical and sporting attractions. Earlier this year, Time Out magazine recognised the area’s strengths, naming Liverpool as the seventh best city in the world, ranking above Tokyo, Rome and Paris.

The new tourism partnership is backed by all of the city region’s local authorities and will be delivered in partnership by staff from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and Liverpool City Council.

As a nationally recognised official body, the partnership will provide strong leadership and management of the region’s visitor economy and will work collaboratively with the public and private sectors.

Due to the importance of the visitor economy and its influence on the Liverpool City Region’s overall economic success, board members will support the visitor economy sector’s growth; influence policy; work to stimulate overall economic growth, productivity, and competitiveness; and support the Liverpool City Region in its overarching aim for inclusive growth and sustainability.

Chair of the LVEP Board, Lord Hall, said:

“This is a fantastic opportunity to come back to my roots and play a role in promoting this incredible region, which has so much to offer to visitors.

“I’m proud and honoured to be leading a very high-calibre board that represents the diversity of the sector and the city region.  I can’t wait to get to know them and to work together to bring even more people to this wonderful city and region.”

Steve Rotheram, Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said:

“The Liverpool City Region is a national and international destination of choice, renowned for its unbeatable culture, music, sport, hospitality and much, much more.

“In the last year alone, we’ve completely transformed an event as iconic as Eurovision – and welcomed golf’s global superstars for the 151st edition of The Open in Hoylake. That’s in addition to the Grand National, two Premier League football teams and the most successful Super League team in the country calling our area home.

“But we’re not here to rest on our laurels and this is all about ambition; we want to go from strength to strength and partnership is the key to that. That’s why I’ve pledged to double support for culture to 2% of our budget to build on our achievements.  It’s because of our recent success that we’ve been able to attract someone of Tony’s calibre to help turbocharge this work over the next few years. We are already the UK’s cultural capital but watch out because we’re only just getting started!”

Cllr Graham Morgan, Leader of Knowsley Council, commented:

“We have so many wonderful visitor attractions and events here in Knowsley and across the Liverpool City Region. This partnership is a really exciting opportunity to build on our success and achievements and encourage even more people to visit and spend time in our amazing borough and region.”

Find out more

Find out more about LVEP, and the board members by visiting the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority website.