Coronavirus: Tourism Industry Update

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News for the Tourism Industry in Wales

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24 March 2021


Coronavirus: Tourism Industry Update

Please follow the news reports and for latest advice regularly visit the Public Health Wales website and the Business Wales website

BULLETIN CONTENTS - Guidance for Tourism and Hospitality Businesses; Cultural Recovery Fund Phase 2 grant; “Let’s Shape the Future: working in partnership to reconstruct a resilient future for the visitor economy in Wales”; More than £2.8 million to support mid and west Wales projects; Non-Domestic Rates Linked Grants; Welsh Government updates Coronavirus Control Plan; Are you preparing to reopen to the public? Order your free bilingual Open/Closed door signs today; RESEARCH: COVID-19 UK Tourism Consumer Tracker Survey / Regional and Local Tourism Profiles; COVID-19 vaccination strategy update March 2021; National Forest for Wales – Your Views and Voices; WELSH FOOD AND DRINK: Workshops for the retail and hospitality sector – preparing to open up; SKILLS & TRAINING: Personal Learning Accounts; Social Model of Disability – what it’s all about and why it matters; Accessible Tourism; The Health and Safety Executive News: Updated advice on talking with your workers about preventing coronavirus / HSE COVID-19 guidance and updates / Coronavirus (COVID-19): Bogus email not from HSE; Ending Physical Punishment in Wales; Welsh Government Consultations; Useful COVID-19 information.

Guidance for Tourism and Hospitality Businesses

As we look towards a phased re-opening, you need to be aware of the guidance for Tourism and Hospitality businesses

To help you decide which actions to take, Coronavirus Regulations require you to carry out a specific COVID-19 risk assessment, just as you would for other health and safety-related hazards. This risk assessment must be done in consultation with staff and representatives (recognised trade union or a representative chosen by workers) and be made available to staff. 

HSE (Health & Safety Executive) provides useful templates to help you undertake a specific COVID-19 risk assessment that will take you through the hierarchy of controls from the most to the least effective.  An overview of the hierarchy of controls can be found in Appendix 1 of the Tourism and Hospitality Guidance. You will also find links within the Welsh Government guidance to sector-specific and industry guidance containing further detail including the UKH Cymru Guidance

Cultural Recovery Fund Phase 2 grant

The Cultural Recovery Fund Phase 2 will open for applications from the week beginning 6 April and close on 20 April. The timing for the Fund for freelancers will be announced separately.

The funding is to cover the period from 1 April 2021 to 30 September 2021.

Application criteria can now be reviewed prior to its opening through the Eligibility Checker.

Find out more on the Business Wales website.

“Let’s Shape the Future: working in partnership to reconstruct a resilient future for the visitor economy in Wales”

A new recovery plan for the tourism, hospitality and events sector has now been published. Developed in consultation with the Tourism Taskforce and informed by wide-ranging conversation with other important groups, stakeholders and businesses across the sector, the plan includes a shared partnership framework of essential themes around which interventions will be built to support businesses through short to medium-term recovery. The 8 essential themes include:

  1. Supporting business.
  2. Valuing people.
  3. Reopening safely.
  4. Rebuilding consumer confidence.
  5. Stimulating and managing demand.
  6. Developing local visitor economies.
  7. Transforming the sector to be more resilient.
  8. Developing tailored recovery plans.

Given the uncertain path to recovery for the industry, the intention is for this plan to evolve, providing an important bridge back to the Strategic Plan for the sector Welcome to Wales: Priorities for the Visitor Economy 2020-2025”.

The plan recommends a Task & Finish Group is formed to drive forward a more tactical action plan including more detail behind the interventions and agreed delivery leads. Further consideration will be given towards how this group will be formed and the associated Terms of Reference.

Visit Wales would like to thank the industry for their invaluable input into shaping this plan, and we look forward to continuing these conversations over the coming weeks and months.

Plans for new tech cluster in Ebbw Vale move forward

The Welsh Government’s plans to create an exciting new tech cluster in Ebbw Vale are being driven forward by investment in 5G technology, a new campus for cyber testing and innovative new business accommodation.

Through a new 5G Wales Unlocked project, the Welsh Government is bringing 5G mobile connectivity to support pilots across education, transport, tourism and farming in Blaenau Gwent and neighbouring Monmouthshire.  Read the announcement in full on Gov.Wales.          

More than £2.8 million to support mid and west Wales projects

Welsh Government is providing more than £2.8 million to accelerate important projects in mid and south west Wales that will support the region in recovering from the economic impacts of coronavirus.

Each of the six local authorities in the area will receive £380,000 for infrastructure schemes which are aligned with the aims of a more prosperous, equal and green economy as outlined in Welsh Government’s recently launched Economic Resilience and Reconstruction Mission.  Read the announcement in full on Gov.Wales

Non-Domestic Rates Linked Grants

The First Minister announced on 12 March additional Non-Domestic Rate linked grants.  The additional support will help businesses in the hospitality, tourism, leisure and non-essential retail sectors that pay non-domestic rates and will operate as a top up to the Restrictions Business Fund.

The application window will close at 5pm on 31 March 2021.  Visit the Business Wales website for more details.

Welsh Government updates Coronavirus Control Plan

The Welsh Government has updated its Coronavirus Control Plan, setting out how and when more people and businesses will be able to resume their activities in the safest possible way.

In December, the First Minister published the Coronavirus Control Plan: Alert Levels for Wales, which set out how the national measures would be introduced in a more predictable way based on a framework of 4 alert levels.

The plan has been updated to take account of Wales’ fast-moving vaccination programme and the emergence of the highly-infectious Kent variant of the virus, which is now dominant throughout Wales. It also reflects the risk of new, potentially vaccine-resistant variants of coronavirus being imported into Wales from people holidaying and travelling overseas.

The new plan will support the Welsh Government to continue to relax restrictions while the public health situation continues to remain positive – rates have fallen significantly across Wales thanks to all the hard work and sacrifices made by people during the winter months. It sets out a range of indicators the Welsh Government will analyse and assess, alongside professional expert advice and intelligence from local partners, to determine how restrictions are relaxed.

But if there are strong signs of a growth in infections, it also sets out how the relaxations may need to be slowed, paused or in the worst case, reversed.

Read the announcement in full on Gov.Wales.  

Are you preparing to reopen to the public? Order your free bilingual Open/Closed door signs today

Did you know that you can order free bilingual ‘Open/Closed’ door signs via the Helo Blod website? With restrictions gradually easing and businesses preparing to reopen across Wales it’s the perfect time to order!

Do you have staff who can speak or are learning Welsh? You can order free lanyards and badges which show your customers and visitors who can speak or are learning Welsh.

That’s not all Helo Blod can offer. Helo Blod can provide free English>Welsh translation, text checking and offer practical advice on how to market and promote your business and make the Welsh language more visible in your shop, café, restaurant, accommodation, visitor attraction as well as on your website and social media.  Just visit to find out more.


COVID-19 UK Tourism Consumer Tracker Survey

The latest report on consumer sentiment and trip intentions from the UK market is available on the VisitBritain website.  This shows confidence in being able to take a UK holiday starting to pick up from June onwards, and that 17% have planned and 12% have already booked their next domestic overnight trip.

Regional and Local Tourism Profiles

A summary of key tourism statistics at regional and local levels for 2017-2019 is available on the Welsh Government website.  These reports bring together findings from key tourism surveys, with additional analysis by region and local authority areas within Wales.

COVID-19 vaccination strategy update March 2021

An update on the progress we are making in vaccinating the Welsh population and a review of our vaccination approach has now been published on Gov.Wales.

National Forest for Wales – Your Views and Voices

A series of online discussion sessions were held 10-12 March to give people the opportunity to discuss the National Forest for Wales. 

The First Minister opened the three day online event with the announcement of a new demonstrator project to increase the number of exemplar National Forest sites across Wales. These will be woodlands in addition to those on the Welsh Government’s Woodland Estate which are already capable of demonstrating the National Forest outcomes which will recognise the time, effort and the enthusiasm so many people put into managing our fabulous woodlands.

In addition to this, funding will be available to improve woodlands to National Forest standard in the future. This will include funding for new woodland areas.  Further detail will follow over the next few months.

Recordings of the presentations and panel Q&As from 10-12 March event will soon be available on the YouTube National Forest for Wales playlist.


Workshops for the retail and hospitality sector – preparing to open up

Wales. A Food Destination is a project which specialises in supporting retail and hospitality businesses to source, serve and sell Welsh food and drink.  They are offering a number of masterclass sessions in the next few months which could help businesses to freshen up their menu or improve their unique selling point.  Visit the Food Skills Cymru website to view upcoming events – these will be updated over the coming weeks.

They are also able to offer fully funded one-to-one consultations so if you are looking for support or advice please contact Food Skills Cymru.


Personal Learning Accounts

Help your existing staff gain the qualifications and skills your businesses needs through a free, flexible college course.  Find out more and register your interest via the Skills Gateway.

For up-to-date information on other skills, recruitment and training support for your business, as well as other support such as Wellbeing for employers and employees, visit our Skills pages

Social Model of Disability – what it’s all about and why it matters

Welsh Government’s Let’s Talk Respect campaign team recently produced its first animation - a short film called ‘Let’s Raise the Roof’ to illustrate The Social Model of Disability. The film is about Sam, a non-disabled person in a world full of wheelchair users. The animation follows Sam as he tries to make a good first impression at his new job. It’s a light-hearted film with a serious message, and is just the start of our journey to breaking down barriers and embrace the Social Model.

Watching the animation is a great way to start thinking about the barriers which can inadvertently affect customers and staff and what you can do to make Welsh tourism accessible to all.

Find out more about Welsh Government’s social model guidance on Business Skills Gateway - Disabled People's Employment where, among other useful information, you will find A More Equal Wales: A Practical Guide for Employers to Employing Disabled People.

Accessible Tourism

ITSO (the International Social Tourism Organisation), brings together stakeholders from the social, sustainable and solidarity tourism sectors from all over the world, to promote accessible and responsible tourism.  ITSO have recently published its Recommendations to help tourism providers in welcoming people with disabilities during a health crisis such as COVID-19.

Health and Safety Executive News:

  • Updated advice on talking with your workers about preventing coronavirus - updated guidance to help you have conversations with your workforce about providing support and keeping control measures in place.
  • HSE COVID-19 guidance and updates - the latest coronavirus-related guidance and information, as well as updated previously published content. 
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19): Bogus email not from HSE - You may have received an email falsely claiming to be from HSE, informing you of 'health and safety violations', 'escalations of complaints' or something similar. HSE is investigating these emails and advises you to delete them. Do not click any links and do not open any attached files. For more details visit the HSE website

Ending Physical Punishment in Wales

From 21 March 2022, the law in Wales is changing.  Physical punishment of children will be illegal in Wales, including the home.  Physical punishment can mean smacking, hitting, slapping and shaking, but there are other types too. The overarching aim is to help protect children’s rights and give all children in Wales the best start in life.  

Once the law commences Wales will join over 55 nations across the globe who have already banned physical punishment of children.

This is relevant to the Tourism industry as the law will apply to everybody who is in Wales – residents and visitors.  Welsh Government will launch a public awareness campaign later this year, including TV, radio, digital and billboard advertising to raise awareness of the change in the law.  

To find out more visit Gov.Wales/EndPhysicalPunishment or if you have any queries, email .

Welsh Government Consultations

Please find below a few of the latest consultations. Consultation provides you with the opportunity to have your say on new developments from the Welsh Government.

Useful COVID-19 information

As each premises is different, businesses should read all guidance. This continues to be updated so please check back regularly for the latest information.

Stay up to date with tourism industry news

We are committed to providing the support and assurance the business community needs during these unprecedented difficult times and have issued several Coronavirus (COVID-19) related bulletins which can be found on the Tourism Industry Coronavirus (COVID-19) Bulletins page. 

Business Wales is providing businesses with tailored support and advice about dealing with coronavirus, from financial and supply chain planning to advice on staffing issues. We would advise Tourism businesses and stakeholders in Wales wanting specific guidance to visit the Business Wales website or call Business Wales helpline on 03000 6 03000, and to regularly visit the Public Health Wales website for up-to-date public health information for you, your staff and your visitors.