A scheme providing people with training and knowledge about tourism in Denbighshire is proving popular with 200 signed up since its launch last year.
The Denbighshire Tourism Ambassador Scheme offers a variety of online training modules on a variety of themes in order to improve the overall visitor experience. It’s totally free and open to everyone. This is the first online scheme of its kind in Wales.
Module themes include – Denbighshire towns & city, walking, cycling, history, arts, coast, Clwydian Range & Dee Valley AONB, welsh language & culture, food tourism and the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal World Heritage Site.
There are 3 levels of awards – bronze, silver and gold, depending on the amount of modules completed. Each person receives a certificate, pin badge and window stickers on completion of the awards.
Leader of Denbighshire, Councillor Hugh Evans OBE, said: “We know that continuous learning can have a positive impact on people’s lives. Whether people are looking to brush up on their skills, to try something new, to seek information or to improve their job prospects; Adult Learners’ Week is a great time to start. The Denbighshire Tourism Ambassador Scheme offers the flexibility and convenience for you to gain new knowledge and become part of a shared interest community.”
The online scheme launched in 2019 and continues to grow with a range of Ambassadors including local people, accommodation and attraction providers, shops, pubs, students, library staff, tour guides and volunteers.
Jenny Whitham, who runs Faraway Follies boutique guest lodges in Llandegla said: “Becoming a Tourism Ambassador is a great way of getting to know more information about the area that I could impart to my guests. The online modules are well-paced, a nice mix of video and words, they’re easy to follow and the quizzes at the end are fairly simple. Adding that extra little bit of service for guests is invaluable. If the locals are friendly and knowledgeable then people will be encouraged to visit and return to the area.”
Paul Hughes. walking group leader for the Vale of Clwyd Mind commented: “I chose to become a Denbighshire Tourism Ambassador because it gives you more information, it’s always handy to have more knowledge when you’re leading people on walks and taking people around the different areas. The course is free as well which always helps. And you can do it at home over a couple of evenings a week, so it’s brilliant. You can’t have enough knowledge as they say, it’s always nice to learn something new.”
The scheme is now being recognised across North Wales and other local authorities and National Parks are looking at running a similar online scheme. The long-term aim is to establish North Wales Ambassadors to ensure tourism messages are consistent to maximise the visitor experience and encourage sustainable tourism.
The project has received funding through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government.