Cruise ships to bring huge revenue
to South West
Destination South West's most successful seminar was held
at Pendennis Castle on Thursday 20th March. Sixty-five delegates
from in and around Falmouth came to hear Director of Cruise
Operations Bob Harrison explain how businesses can give disembarking
cruise passengers an unforgettable experience and how that
experience will produce a lucrative return.
In the year since DSW was set up by the 18 partners from
seven ports, local councils and attractions, the number of
cruise ships calling at Falmouth has risen from 23 to 49.
Mike Reynolds, Operations Manager for Falmouth Docks, gave
attendees a list of the names and dates the ships will visit
in 2003, starting with the Black Prince on 21st March.
With each passenger expected to spend an average of £50,
this lucrative section of tourism will bring £2.2 million
to Falmouth and its hinterland during 2003. Crew members often
spend as much, so attention needs to be paid to them as well.
Both holidaymakers and locals will be attracted to the port
to look at the cruise ships and they bring their spending
Bob Harrison said that because service on board ship is of
the highest standard, passengers expect the same level of
attention once they step ashore, so businesses must be ready
with a smile and all the information which might be required
from offering dollars and euros, to knowledge of shipping
procedures and evening opening on Sundays or for late shopping
if a cruise ship arrives out of normal business hours.
He explained that 42% of cruise visitors will return if the
experience has been friendly and enjoyable.
Delegate Colin Reid, Visitor Officer of Truro Cathedral,
said that DSW was an excellent initiative since it enabled
many small businesses to pool resources to do 'joined
up marketing, keying into the expertise and skills of Bob
Harrison'. New Falmouth Town Centre Manager Peter Rugg
who did a magnificent job in informing local companies about
the seminar was pleased with the wide range of people who
attended who will get together and help each other. Peter
Gliddon of Pendennis Castle has already seen the benefits
from the cruise ships last year, so after suffering the effects
of foot and mouth, it was good to see the increasing spend
in the shop and café.
Bob Harrison has been in the cruise industry for over 30
years and knows all the senior managers in the 80 cruise companies
which operate in Europe. A CD brochure and website have been
produced, highlighting all the attractions in and around each
port. By attending the seminars, businesses are entitled to
appear on these marketing tools, and the CD will be in the
library of all cruise ships calling at DSW ports, so passengers
will be able to decide what to do and where to go before disembarking.
Dates, times and names of cruise ships will all be displayed
on the website to enable businesses to plan opening times
Douglas Ward, President of the Maritime Evaluation Agency
and author of the Berlitz Guide to Cruising, who is responsible
for grading all cruise ships around the world and who therefore
has tremendous influence within the industry, is DSW's
The first seminar was held in Dartmouth, followed by Plymouth,
Torquay, St Mary's on Scilly and Penzance. A seminar
will be held at Fowey at a later date, and probably also at
Ilfracombe which has just joined the partnership. A total
of 167 delegates have attended, many of whom set up committees
to implement plans to co-ordinate a memorable welcome for
arriving passengers. Networking opportunities were also exploited
amongst attending delegates.
Funding for these seminars has been provided by the Tourism
Skills Network, Marine South West and Trade Partners UK.
Destination South West is a partnership of
the public and private sectors including the ports of Isles
of Scilly, Penzance, Falmouth, Fowey, Plymouth, Dartmouth,
Torbay and Ilfracombe. It is funded by the European Regional
Development through the Objective One and Two Programmes.
It also receives funding through the South West Regional Development
For further information please contact Teresa
Timms at Cornwall Enterprise on 01872 322907 or 07968 515532
or Bob Harrison at Destination South West on 01803 771136
or 07974 950990.
Objective One Partnership Office
Truro TR1 2UD
Tel: 01872 241379
Fax: 01872 241388
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