Crescent tourism chief to give global ambitions lecture

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A leading figure in the tourism industry is to lay out his vision for Buxton as a world-class destination in a public lecture later this month.

James Berresford, the former chief executive of VisitEngland, will use the occasion to highlight the opportunities created around the restoration of the historic Crescent.

The lecture is at the University of Derby’s Buxton campus on Wednesday, February 22, starting at 6pm.

James said: “Today’s visitor expects the very best. World class is without doubt becoming the new norm.”

Citing the Pavilion Gardens, the opera house, the festival, new investment in the museum, Poole’s Cavern and the links with Chatsworth, he added: “We have all the ingredients, But unless we stitch these wonderful elements together, we are not going to meet our ambition of being a leading UK destination.”

Derbyshire-born James has accepted an unpaid role as the first chairman of the Buxton Crescent and Thermal Spa Heritage Trust.

The trust was set up to ensure the legacy of the £50million project, which will turn the Grade I listed building into the Peak District’s first five-star hotel.

James was at the forefront of English tourism policy during two of the nation’s most important events of recent years: the 2012 Olympics and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee

The event is free, but booking essential via www.derby.ac.uk/james-berresford.