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New Tourism Chief For Liverpool


Liverpool City Council has appointed a leading Scottish tourism entrepreneur to lead its Tourism service.

Alison McRae, 39, will take up the post of Director of Destination Liverpool in the middle of November to oversee the city region’s £1.3 bn visitor economy sector and build on the city’s success as European Capital of Culture.

Alison, who has a 17-year successful track record in tourism and economic development, will also act as an external champion and spokesman for the Council and the sector at a local, regional, national and international level.

The Glasgow-born entrepreneur’s main task is to ensure that Liverpool’s visitor and cultural economy is at the heart of the city’s economic and regeneration agenda and to work in tandem with key public and private sector partners including major asset holders in the City Centre. Alison will also co-ordinate strategy with Liverpool Vision, The Mersey Partnership, Tourism Directors in neighbouring local authorities, Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and Visit Britain.

Liverpool has undergone a £4bn transformation over the past 10 years including the creation of a new cruise liner facility, a new canal link, a new arena and conference centre and the new Liverpool One retail and leisure development while the number of hotel beds in the city has doubled in that time to over 5,000.

Previously Alison worked with Scottish Enterprise and as Project Director for the Scottish Government initiative “Homecoming Scotland” where she designed the vision and strategy for this year long programme of events and activities which is running this year to drive tourism growth.

Alison, who has a masters degree in architecture at Trinity College, Cambridge and attended Harvard Business School before setting up project management consultancy firm Blue Toucan, said she was excited by the opportunities and challenges of the new position.

Alison commented: ‘’Liverpool has developed a fantastic reputation as a must see destination following the phenomenal success of its year as European Capital of Culture. The city’s tourism offer is already strong and its great to see that it is continuing to invest in assets such as new the Museum of Liverpool. My challenge now is to develop this unique brand and work with partners to take the city where it needs to be in 10-15 years time – which is among the very best city destinations in the world. I’m looking forward to working in the city and helping to shape the next chapter in its success story.”