South West Tourism Alliance welcomes the appointment of East Devon MP Simon Jupp as Chair of Hospitality and Tourism APPG

Tourism and business leaders in the South West are commending the appointment of one of the region’s MPs as Chair of the prestigious APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) for Hospitality and Tourism. Simon Jupp, the MP for East Devon was elected as Chair of the Parliamentary Group that focuses on the tourism industry, including the twin challenges of operating post pandemic and Brexit.

Chair of South West Tourism Alliance, Alistair Handyside MBE said: “ We are delighted that Simon has been elected to Chair of the group. This APPG is key to influencing and developing policy for the tourism and hospitality industry as whole. It takes a leading role in promoting the significant work that the sector undertakes in raising standards, improving quality and promoting the UK as a global destination.

“The group has also raised the awareness of many of the issues experienced by operators during the pandemic, and has been instrumental in calling for better regulation and fairer taxation. We are hugely pleased and not to say relieved that the Chair is a local MP who understands the industry and operators well and is prepared to champion their corner. It means that we can have a much more direct dialogue, which would be much harder if the MP was not from the South West. We wish him every success.”

Julie Hawker, Vice Chair of South West Business Council said: “The appointment of Simon Jupp to the role of chair gives us much to celebrate. Simon has been a vocal advocate of the South West and our tourism over many months, calling for better transport links, better water quality and improved accommodation standards. He has an excellent understanding of many of the issues that operators and small businesses face, as well as the larger tourism players. We are keen that the South West is well represented on important groups such as this – and that tourism, as one of our principal sectors, has a knowledgeable and proactive champion.”

Amanda Lumley, Executive Director of Destination Plymouth and Co-Chair of the Great South West Tourism Partnership said: “Steve Double MP has been an excellent chair for the tourism and hospitality APPG, and his departure was a loss to the region but we are very relieved the chairmanship will stay within the South West. With Simon’s help, we can ensure that the sector is well represented with our concerns heard by Government and allied industry. The recently published ‘Du Bois’ report highlights key recommendations to government to fund and support destinations for the long term so the timing of this appointment is very positive. The last couple of years have been devastating to many businesses and the supply chain as a result. Recruitment, skills and training are all live issues, which are presenting a barrier to a lot of companies, so we want to ensure that tourism is not forgotten in the wake of the pandemic. We want to make sure our tourism offer recovers and gets back up and running even better than before.”

The APPG for tourism and hospitality is a cross party group representing the industry with the aims of representing and promoting the sector. Tourism and hospitality employ nearly 3m people and generates over £130bn in economic activity, making it the third largest private sector employer in the UK.