Gatwick briefs new tourism minister on £1bn investment in world class welcome

02 July 2010

John Penrose MP, the new Minister for Tourism & Heritage, visited Gatwick Airport to see first hand the improvements being made to the customer experience as part of the airport's £1 billion investment plan. The July 1 visit, facilitated by Tourism South East, was hosted by Stewart Wingate, Chief Executive of Gatwick Airport and attended by senior representatives from Tourism South East including John Williams, Chairman.

Improvements include this week's opening of the state-of-the-art inter-terminal shuttle and the news that the airport has committed to the Welcome Host Gold customer care programme developed by Tourism South East.

"Gatwick Airport is a key gateway into the South East region for overseas visitors" said John Williams, Chairman of Tourism South East. "We fully support the drive to enhance the welcome experienced by incoming visitors. I am delighted our Welcome Host Gold customer care programme is being developed for the Gatwick Airport team and will be rolled out from this autumn to over 2000 airport staff. In the run-up to the 2012 Games, getting our welcome right is crucial and has to start as soon as our visitors touch down."

As well as touring the airport to see the new terminal linkage, the Tourism and Heritage Minister saw the inspirational images of the Beautiful South located between the South terminal shuttle and the railway station. The iconic images give arriving passengers a visual taster of the region.

Stewart Wingate, CEO of Gatwick Airport, said: "Gatwick Airport is an important gateway to the UK. We have been working closely with Tourism South East to improve our welcome through the Welcome Host customer care programme and through the use of impactful images that set the scene for visitors to the South East. We were delighted the Minister was able to visit the airport to see what we have achieved to date and our ambitious plans to make Gatwick London's airport of choice."

For more information contact Dan Holmes on 023 8062 5449 or email: dholmes@tourismse.com

More information about Tourism South East can be found at www.tourismsoutheast.com

More information about Gatwick Airport can be found at www.gatwickairport.com

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