The man in charge of the De La Warr Pavilion has been revealed as the new head of a group which promotes tourism in Hastings and Rother.
Stewart Drew is the new chairman of 1066 Country Marketing, the private/public sector partnership responsible for marketing the area to visitors.
Stewart is well-known locally as the director and CEO of the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill.
He follows in the footsteps of previous chairman George Bailey.
George was the general manager at Bodiam Castle, but has now moved out of the area.
Stewart said: “The visitor economy is vitally important to many local businesses, and employs over 11 000 local people across 1066 Country.
“This is an exciting time for 1066 Country as we are just starting to develop our strategy for the next ten years.
“We’ve carried out a lot of market research this summer across the area, and that will be used to help us plan how to maximise the impact of tourism to the area.
“It is already worth over £550m locally, and I am hoping that we will be able to increase this over coming years by attracting more higher spending visitors throughout the year.
“We have seen the tourism industry evolve in the last ten years, and we must adapt to attract new audiences to a varied and compelling 1066 Country offer.”
Kevin Boorman, manager of 1066 Country Marketing, welcomed Stewart to the role, in what is a very important year for Hastings and Battle in particular.
Kevin said: “I am delighted that Stewart is joining us to help steer us through what promises to be an interesting period.
“As we move forward from celebrating the 950th anniversary of ‘that’ battle we need to refocus on what we do, and ensure that we properly recognise the wide range of fantastic attractions that there are here in this area.
“Many people know of our historic castles and gardens, but may be less aware of recent additions such as the Source Park, and Jerwood Gallery, or the improvements that have been carried out to other attractions such as the De La Warr Pavilion.
“We also need to continue to promote the numerous events and festivals that take place all year round across 1066 Country.
“Stewart’s knowledge and expertise will be invaluable as we develop and implement our ten year strategy, and I look forward to working with him.”
* To find out more about 1066 Country Marketing, and information about events taking place in Hastings ad Rother, visit http://www.visit1066country.com/
The website includes details of all the Battle of Hastings 950th anniversary celebrations, including the grand re-enactment at Battle Abbey and battlefield.
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