Businesses are being encouraged to take a leading role in promoting north Norfolk’s multi-million pound tourism industry as part of a revamp of the way the district is being marketed.

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In three years, Visit North Norfolk (VNN), the body responsible for promoting tourism from Heacham to Horsey and inland areas including Fakenham, North Walsham and the Broads, will receive no local authority funding.

It will receive £37,500 from North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) and £5,000 from the Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk this year and £20,000 from NNDC and £5,000 from the west Norfolk council next year.

VNN’s new brand manager Lucy Downing, who spoke about the organisation’s plans to drive more visitors to the area at a networking event at The Hoste in Burnham Market last night, said the private sector will need to become more involved in promoting north Norfolk as a holiday destination.

VNN is funded by businesses who pay to be its members, to receive marketing services and to be part of specific marketing campaigns.

Mrs Downing said: “It is best if everyone works together. We will be focusing on increasing our membership and encouraging businesses to be part of the marketing campaigns we are planning if they feel they are suitable to them.

“I think tourism should be privately funded, just like other sectors, and the benefits will be that the businesses themselves will drive the way the area is promoted.”

VNN’s new logo was unveiled last night.

It features a crab wearing a crown and the words ‘relax, discover, explore, retreat.’

The images highlight north Norfolk’s food offering, the coast and the area’s royal connections.

Figures from VNN show that the tourism industry is worth £873m per year to the economies of north and west Norfolk and provides 23pc of employment in north Norfolk and 15pc of employment in west Norfolk.

Mrs Downing said: “Tourism is absolutely vital to this area.

“It is an exciting time for the industry and we want to make north Norfolk at the top of everyone’s minds as a holiday destination in England along with Cornwall, Yorkshire, the Lake District and Derbyshire.”

VNN’s newly revamped website, www.visitnorthnorfolk.com goes live today.

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