EXMOOR’S premier tourism guide, Exmoor Coast and Country 2009, was officially launched today, following months of hard work by the board of Exmoor Coast and Country Ltd.
The guide was rescued last year in a deal between the Exmoor Tourist Association and West Somerset Council following the debacle surrounding the collapse of tourism promoter Visit Exmoor.
It is distributed throughout the UK and is seen as an important publication drawing visitors from across the country to enjoy the delights of Exmoor and West Somerset.
Strong partnership working between the tourist association and the district council has been credited with saving the publication when its future was thrown into jeopardy after last year’s tourism season.
The official launch celebrations took place in Exmoor's highest village, at the Rest and Be Thankful Inn, Wheddon Cross, which has been refurbished by owners Eric and Julie Norman, with many key figures in local tourism attending the event.
Council leader Councillor Keith Ross said: “We are delighted that we have been able to produce the guide again this year, and we are pleased with the support it has received from local advertisers.
“Given the current economic uncertainty, it may be tempting to cut advertising costs but local businesses have chosen to support the guide.
“Tourism plays a vital part in the local economy, and Exmoor Coast and Country plays an important role in promoting Exmoor and West Somerset’s coastal area.
“Launching Exmoor Coast and Country before Christmas is great timing as many people use their time off to plan their summer holidays.
“We will also be able to use the guide to promote Exmoor at tourism trade shows early in the New Year.
“Indeed, with the pound at such a low against the dollar and the euro, there has never been a better time for visitors from abroad to come to Exmoor, and we aim to promote the area as widely as possible.”
Tourism association chairman Antony Brunt said: “We are really pleased to launch the 2009 guide.
“It stands out at shows and exhibitions for its excellent quality, which makes it very popular and gives high expectations for all those planning to visit the area.
“It is now up to everybody in the tourism sector to ensure those high expectations are fulfilled.”