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Herne Bay's growth threatened by Canterbury's greed

Herne Bay's future centres on tourism - it's a business model that is tried and trusted, it's well-understood and it's sustainable.

It makes sense to make the most of the most obvious quality Herne Bay has - the fact that it's a nice little town by the seaside.

Tourism is not isolated from the rest of the local economy, quite the reverse. Our vistors - whether coming for a day trip, a weekend, or longer - generate business and spread wealth at every turn. B&B room tabs, restaurant bills, pub rounds, shop tills, even parking meters.

Money, time and effort spent encouraging tourism in Herne Bay is not expenditure, it's investment.

But Canterbury City Council seems to think differently. Rather than investing in promoting Herne Bay's tourist offering, they insist on charging people who want to promote our town and encourage tourism.

Any B&B or hotel owner who wants to promote their business on Canterbury's tourism website has to pay £275, plus £10 per room, plus VAT to get the most basic entry - bare bones facts plus 25 words of text. Times are hard and margins are tight, so this is beyond the budget of most of these small businesses.

As a result, anyone looking at Canterbury's tourism site could be forgiven for thinking that Herne Bay has just 2 B&Bs - one on Western Esplanade, and one in Herne. A stroll along the seafront will take you past many excellent B&Bs that don't get a mention.

Canterbury seems to have forgotten that it is in everyone's best interests to encourage tourism and foster a thriving local economy, rather than to grasp every chance to take yet more money from the local Council tax payers. Instead of acting as an agent of promotion, our Council has cast itself in the role of advertising agency.

Canterbury's short-term greed could be the death of our town.

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Reader Comments (2)

I agree! All the very nice B&B's in Herne Bay should be listed on the Canterbury site. We all make a big effort to give a very high standard of service. Let's hope CCC take some notice!
Fri, March 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnne Davies
Further questions should be asked when the Hotel at Talmead HERNE BAY is advertised with trip advisor by CCC as North Canterbury. Lets be clear the determination by staff at CCC is to OPTIMISE the word CANTERBURY for computer search engines, all business in Herne Bay should appeal for Business Tax reduction due to the level of misrepresentation and lack of even handed ethical fairness, nobody or any business should not be disadvantaged by the activities of any authority.
Sat, April 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGeoff Wimble

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