The Coach Tourism Association (CTA) has hailed what it describes as a positive networking event held recently in Newport that saw strong political engagement and support for the coach as a facilitator of tourism in South Wales.
CTA’s gathering was sponsored by Visit Wales with support from Southern Wales Tourism. The Association says that it “is likely to lead to a strong boost for tours and excursions” to the region, thanks also to familiarisation visits to local attractions.
From a political point of view, Newport City Council Leader Cllr Jane Mudd outlined the local authority’s commitment to work with the sector to boost the number of visitors arriving by coach. Meanwhile, Minister for the Economy Vaughan Gething acknowledged coaches’ existing and untapped contribution to tourism in South Wales.
“Group and coach travel plays an important part of our visitor economy,” says Mr Gething. “Coach travel can also help us with our aim to introduce people to lesser-known areas of Wales and to travel all year round while also using sustainable modes of transport. Together we can hopefully grow the number of people embracing coach travel to enjoy more day visits and holidays here.”
Speaking after the networking event in South Wales, Robert Shaw (pictured), CTA Chair and Director of coach operator Harry Shaw, adds: “We received a very warm welcome and amazing hospitality from our Welsh hosts and I am sure that CTA members will now be looking at new opportunities for tours and excursions to Southern Wales.
“Newport provides an excellent base for tours of the region and the stunning new Mercure in the city centre is a welcome addition to the range of hotels available.”
Attractions visited as part of the familiarisation work included Raglan Castle, Caerleon, Usk, Tredegar House and Newport’s Transporter Bridge. The next CTA networking event will be held in Glasgow between 24-26 July.