At this year’s Annual General Meeting of the Tourism Alliance, the umbrella trade association for the UK’s tourism industry, Emma McClarkin OBE was appointed as its new Chair.

Emma is the Chief Executive of the British Beer and Pub Association and has served as a director of the Tourism Alliance for some years, as well as its Vice Chair. Emma takes over from Tom Jenkins, Chief Executive of ETOA, who has stepped down after serving two years as Tourism Alliance chair.

Emma McClarkin said:

“I am delighted to serve as Chair of the Tourism Alliance at such an important time. Regardless of the outcome of the general election there will be an important job for us to ensure that the economic and social importance of tourism is well understood across Government and Parliament, and that policy decisions are taken to support our sector and allow it to deliver sustainable growth.”


Richard Toomer, the Executive Director of the Tourism Alliance, said:


“I am looking forward to working with Emma and the other members of the Board and Advisory Council on our agenda for the next Parliament. Tourism represents 9% of our GDP, and has potential to grow further with the right policy support. We stand ready to contribute to the next Government’s strategy to grow the British economy. Our policy manifesto, Realising the Potential, outlines a number of areas where Government can support us in doing that.”


Other changes at the Tourism Alliance include Brigid Simmonds OBE formerly of the Betting and Gaming Council stepping down as a Director after many years of service including two terms as Chair. The new Advisory Council has also welcomed two new members: Deborah Heather who, as well as being the Chief Executive of Visit Isle of Man, serves as Chairman of the Tourism Society; and Michael Dugher, Chairman of the Betting and Gaming Council who brings a vast amount of political expertise to the Council as a former Member of Parliament and Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

Published: 20 June 2024

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