Penrose was appointed as tourism minister in 2010 and has left amongst a cabinet reshuffle and as the Olympics and Paralympics come to a close. With no immediate replacement announced, concerns have now raised over whether a tourism minister position will continue. ABTA has called for more clarity and said it will look to meet soon with the new secrtary of state Maria Miller.
“News that the tourism minister, John Penrose, has stood down as part of a down-sizing of DCMS is of concern as we understand there are no plans to replace him. The travel industry called for a minister in order to oversee an effective tourism strategy and we have been encouraged to see progress in this area,” said Luke Pollard, head of public affairs at ABTA.
“We are awaiting confirmation from government as to where the tourism portfolio will now sit. The government has said that tourism is a key driver of economic growth and it is vital that we have clear leadership in place at a time when the tourism legacy from the Olympics needs to be secured and the contribution from outbound, inbound and domestic tourism still needs to be properly understood.”