Latest News
HomeRegional NewsEuropeNew guide to destination management launched by VisitEngland
The new guide is aimed at organisations with responsibilities for tourism development

New guide to destination management launched by VisitEngland

VisitEngland, the national tourist board, launches a new guide to Destination Management Planning. The new guide, available at, is aimed at organisations with responsibilities for tourism development such as destination management organisations, local authorities, private sector, tourism associations and heritage bodies to support the growth of tourism and the visitor economy around the country.

Destination Management Plans set out a vision for growth and development of a place.  It identifies the key stakeholders and articulates their roles, responsibilities and resources required to achieve the vision over a set period of time.

The guide sets out the main principles behind the development of a Destination Management Plan from the initial stages of which stakeholder partners to involve, to setting up a robust process to evaluate progress and ensure the plan is on track.

James Berresford, VisitEngland’s Chief Executive said: “The key to destination management planning is to take a cooperative, holistic approach.  Sustainable growth can only be achieved if there is equal emphasis on the development of the destination’s product and the visitor experience, and promotion and marketing. The plan needs to reflect the needs of the local community and businesses as well as promoting the product to drive growth in the destination. The new guidance will hopefully provide a framework for destinations around the country that can be adapted to their specific local needs. As we have seen from the destinations who already take this approach – done well, destination management plans can help grow the industry, create jobs and make a real difference to local communities.”

The guidance launched is the first of a range of tools, resources and good practice that will be collated to help those involved in tourism development at a local level, demonstrating VisitEngland’s commitment to sharing best practise for the overall growth of the sector.

Visit County Durham implemented a Destination Management Plan six years ago and is working with a wide range of partners cross the county to grow tourism in the area. Melanie Sensicle, Chief Executive gives her top tips for getting the most out of such a planning process:
1. Use this plan as the foundation for everything you do
2. Focus on keeping the needs of visitors, businesses, residents and the environment  in balance
3. Get excellent, expert, committed people working with you
4. Don’t get diverted by single agenda groups and those who shout the loudest
5. Remember, communication is key! Ensure that elected members are well informed and engaged in developing the strategy.
6. Act as the voice of the visitor within your destination.