East Midlands Tourism to shortlist for fresh drive

East Midlands Tourism (EMT) has put its PR account out to tender as it seeks to boost visitor spending in the region.

The body – part of the East Midlands Development Agency – has been working with Nottingham-based Redbrick Communications over the past 12 months, but its contract expires at the end of March.

EMT wants to increase annual visitor spending in the region by £230m by 2008. In 2003 when the target was set, such spend amounted to £1.9bn. In 2005, it was around £2bn.

‘We want to increase visitor spending and we want to partly achieve this via attractions being covered in national and trade press,’ said EMT comms manager Bernadette McAndrew.

The new brief – which will last one year with the possibility of a one-year extension – is worth around £140,000 in fees.

Three agencies will be shortlisted after the pre-qualification questionnaire stage.

McAndrew said the winning bidder would show an understanding of the challenges facing the region in terms of securing coverage, such as competing with overseas destinations.

The region spans areas such as Lincolnshire, Leicestershire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire and Rutland. Att­­ractions include the Peak District, the National Space Centre in Leicestershire and Lincoln Cathedral.

EMT has previously worked with Grant Riches Communications Consultants, which undertook a review of EMT’s ‘stake­holder relations’ last year (PRWeek, 5 May 2006).

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