TOURISM MINISTER PRAISES £3 MILLION INVESTMENT IN TOURING PARK
Tourism and Heritage Minister, John Penrose, has praised the owners of the new Ludlow Touring Park for their £3 million investment. Making a flying visit to Shropshire today (Thursday) Mr Penrose paid an early morning call with local MP Philip Dunne to the luxury touring caravan and motorhome park, where he unveiled a plaque.
The 135-pitch park has been developed to five star standards by Shrewsbury-based Morris Leisure on a 20-acre site alongside the River Teme and with good road links to the A49 near Richards Castle. It officially opens its gates to customers on Wednesday, May 9.
“I am really delighted to see large scale investment going into a very important part of the tourism industry in this beautiful area of the country,” said Mr Penrose. “It is a wonderful destination for caravanners to come to and it looks like a very professional park, which I am sure is going to be full.”
The Minister was greeted by managing director Edward Goddard, director David Goddard and chairman Gareth Jones from Morris Leisure, together with park managers David and Karen Price and assistant managers Joe and Val Gore.
Mr Dunne said: “Tourism is essential for the economy of South Shropshire in general and Ludlow in particular and this new touring park will be a tremendous boost to the area’s facilities. I look forward to welcoming holidaymakers from next month.”
Others who met Mr Penrose include Mark Bebb, managing director of Shrewsbury based caravan dealership Salop Leisure, Joan Clarke deputy director general of the British Holiday and Home Parks Association, Gavin Pritchard, the Caravan Club’s area manager, Chris Plenderleith, of Leith Planning and Councillor Martin Taylor Smith.
The park, which is generating huge interest from caravanners, has a Jubilee Wood, which has been planted in recognition of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee this summer.
“It’s an exciting time for everyone associated with the new park and we are delighted that the Tourism and Heritage Minister found time in his incredibly busy diary to pay a visit,” said Morris Leisure’s managing director Edward Goddard.
“The Minister was very interested in the new development and was pleased with the investment into South Shropshire, which has created six jobs directly and will support many more in the area.
“We believe the park is going to enhance the local tourism offer and generate around £2 million a year for Ludlow and surrounding area, which has got to be good news for the local economy in these challenging times.”
A lunchtime reception was also arranged to give invited guests a sneak preview of the new park, the official opening of which s timed perfectly, as visiting caravan and motorhome owners will be able to enjoy the delights of Ludlow Spring Festival on May 12 and 13.
Gavin Pritchard, The Caravan Club’s area manager for Wales and the West Midlands, said: “This is yet another high quality park that the Morris Leisure Group has developed and will be an asset to Ludlow and its economy.”
Joan Clark, deputy director general of the British Holiday & Home Parks Association, said: “It’s great to see the tourism minister taking a personal interest in the caravan industry.
“Investment by caravan park operators is creating valuable employment opportunities across the country and delivering on the Government’s ambition that tourism is one of the key industries with an important role to lead the country out of recession.”
Morris Leisure also owns four other high quality caravan parks in Shropshire and Snowdonia. Stanmore Hall Touring Park, Bridgnorth and Riverside Touring Park, Betws-y-Coed are prestigious affiliated sites of The Caravan Club, while the company also owns Oxon Hall Touring and Holiday Home Park, Shrewsbury and Bow House Country Park, Bishops Castle.
Date Posted: 12th April 2012