Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 9°C


East Anglia: Hoseasons boss urges firms to take part in Larking Gowen Tourism Business Survey

06:00 21 January 2014

Hoseasons managing director Simon Altham.

Hoseasons managing director Simon Altham.


One of East Anglia’s leading tourism figures has issued a rallying call for businesses to take part in this year’s Larking Gowen Tourism Business Survey.

Simon Altham, managing director of Lowestoft-based holidays firm Hoseasons, urged tourism operators across Norfolk and Suffolk to fill in the online survey before the February 2 closing date.

He made his appeal as Hoseasons, one of the UK’s largest self-catering holiday businesses, released bumper early year booking figures that add to the growing evidence this could be a fabulous “staycation” summer for East Anglia tourism.

A number of holiday cottage lettings firms in the region, including Best of Suffolk, have already reported a strong start to 2014, and Hoseasons says that bookings across its boating portfolio are up 26% compared with the same time last year.

The Broads tops the list of the most popular boating destinations, with bookings up more than 40% on last year, but the positive start to the year is reflected across the business with lodge and park holidays also seeing strong demand, and sales with independent travel agents performing well.

Mr Altham said the importance of investment and good marketing both to be guaged by the survey was underlined by the Broads experience. He said: “It is no coincidence that new boats are booking very well and that is encouraging for companies like Richardson’s who have been making significant investment in their fleet.”

Hoseasons had invested in strong marketing campaigns promoting the destination and launched Starboard, a new luxury boating experience, said Mr Altham.

Urging businesses to sign up to the survey, he said it provided a wealth of information which allowed operators in the region’s number one industry to benchmark themselves against others.

“Everyone wants a barometer of how well they are doing,” he said. “And business confidence breeds more confidence and a sense that things are getting better.”

On the Broads, the brighter picture included improvements to infrastructure and pubs and the Broads Authority working hard to improve tourism, he added.

Mr Altham said positive booking figures across the sector also supported the view that last summer’s glorious weather had “left a sheen on the tourism industry right across the UK”.

The survey, which is backed by Visit Norfolk and Visit Suffolk and promoted by Archant, is available at .


The A1214 leading into Ipswich from the Copdock roundabout is currently blocked due to an accident.

Rail travellers hoping to enjoy weekend days out in London in early 2017 are facing four months more disruption on the main line as Shenfield station is rebuilt.

Everyday our readers send in photos to iwitness24 that they have taken while out and about along the Suffolk coast, visiting one of our many beauty spots or while relaxing in their own gardens.

Corrie McKeague’s disappearance has left his family suffering an “indescribable” void in the 32 days since the RAF Honington airman vanished from the centre of Bury St Edmunds.

This week DAVID KINDRED takes a look at the early days of local radio in Ipswich and Suffolk.

A 65-year-old man has been charged with dangerous driving and failing to notify the authorities of a disability after a cyclist sustained life-threatening injuries in Ipswich.

A young man has been injured after the car he was driving hit a post and overturned in Ipswich.

Two Suffolk communities have been praised for revitalising their high street “as a unique place for living, working and shopping”.

An Ipswich Hospital receptionist is paying the price for her curiosity today after illegally accessing patients’ medical records landed her in court.

Suffolk police are reminding people to “keep their tricks within the law” this Halloween as it announces increased patrols to ensure celebrations remain “safe and enjoyable for everyone”.

Most read

Most commented


Show Job Lists

Topic pages


Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24