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Launch of ‘shop local’ tourist packages at Ironbridge hotel

Peter Bird from the Tandem Experience, Chris Copson – Food and Beverage Manager at the Best Western Valley Hotel and Lee Slim, Assistant Food and Beverage Manager also from the hotel

A World Heritage Site Hotel is teaming up with other local enterprises in a bid to boost visitor numbers to the area.

Staff at the Best Western Valley Hotel in Ironbridge have created a series of packages to encourage visitors to the area and support local businesses.

They want to work alongside firms in and around the town to offer accommodation and activity packages that promote the skills and talents available. Experiences or trips would need to be available at short notice to ensure they were accessible to last-minute bookings.

The move to drive footfall to Ironbridge comes after the iconic Iron Bridge was featured on the BBC One Show as it was unveiled following its revamp.

Lisa Snape, Marketing and Sales Manager at the Valley Hotel, said partnering with other businesses would benefit everyone – including visitors from the UK and abroad.

“We are surrounded by amazing businesses across Shropshire and everyone is working so hard, working collaboratively could enable us to showcase our businesses more effectively and to wider audiences,” she said.

“Things have moved on in the hospitality industry and it’s important that we take into account the fact that our visitors don’t simply want to book a room these days – they are after so much more, looking for something different, the more unusual experiences.

“We are already offering short breaks which include a ticket on the Sabrina boat in Shrewsbury, a tandem experience and a romantic package.

“The offering has to be able to be booked at very short notice due to 24/7 online bookings but we will be able to add stipulations around availability.

“We have lots of attractions on our doorstep so it is important to offer special deals there too so for example if people want a family-fun visit during a half term they can book our deal here whereby they get their accommodation and a ‘passport’ to the attractions covered by the Ironbridge Gorge Museums Trust.

“We hope to be able to offer a wide range of packages and are certainly open to ideas. It might be an art exhibition, or a brewery experience, wine or gin tasting or a sporting activity but whatever it is we are looking forward to sitting down and discussing these options with the business owners to see if we can create something special for tourists from across the world.

“Ironbridge and the surrounding area is a hub of talent and we want to help promote that to the rest of the world.”

One of the partners is Peter Bird from The Tandem Experience.

“We now have an electric tandem which is brilliant and proving very popular – we have over 60 miles of traffic free cycling here on mostly reclaimed railway lines so a bike – especially a tandem is the best way to see the area,” he said.

For more information and to discuss creating a package with The Best Western Valley Hotel, email: sales@thevalleyhotel.co.uk.

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