§ Mr. Key
Most of the action points in "Tourism in the UK: Realising the Potential" which come under the remit of my Department have been taken forward, in most cases via the statutory tourist board.
The British Tourist Authority held a successful conference in October last year to encourage foreign language training in the tourism industry; the British Tourist Authority, the English tourist board—ETB—and the regional tourist boards are working to promote training opportunities within the industry; my Department's proposal for an initiative to disseminate information on facilities for tourists with disabilities was incorporated in the European Community tourism action plan; in November last year we hosted, with the English tourist board, an international Tourism and the Environment conference with speakers and delegates from the United Kingdom and other EC member states; together with the Department of the Environment—DoE—we have commissioned research into the feasibility of obtaining better information on the numbers of day visitors, to assist the calculation of standard spending assessments; we collaborated with the Department of the Environment on the production of the planning policy guidance note on tourism development; the English tourist board will launch Industrial Heritage Year in February; industry leaders have had the chance to comment on the JICTOURS working group's report, and a more permanent user forum is being established.
My Department continues to work with other Departments to take forward issues under their control which were mentioned in "Tourism in the UK" and which affect the tourism industry.
§ Ms. Rachel Squire
To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage when he intends to meet the chairman of the British Tourist Authority to discuss the future of tourism in Great Britain.