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New Shop Window On Wigan Opens
Friday 29th April, 2005

New Shop Window On Wigan Opens
Wigan’s got a lot to offer: the mayor and mayoress Cllr John and Margaret Hilton join staff at the opening of the town’s new tourist information centre.

All eyes were on Wigan when a new centre showcasing what the borough has to offer to tourists opened its doors.

On Friday April 29th, the borough saw the official opening of a brand new Tourist Information Centre (TIC) right in the middle of Wigan town centre.

The new-look facility on Wallgate offers an expanded service supporting not just the anticipated 60,000 visitors and tourism telephone inquiries, but tourism students and local attraction and hotel managers. It will also provide information to help potential tourism developers make investment decisions.

The TIC will have the country’s first ever state-of-the-art e-Tourism Centre, offering users access to electronic tourism information and data. Visitors will even be able to book local hotel accommodation without having to visit the centre’s counters.

Tourism bosses in Wigan have been eager to find a new location for the TIC and better position the service so they can continue to develop the borough’s potential as a visitor destination.

“Tourism in the borough is currently valued at £252m a year and this figure is set to grow,” said Wigan’s Tourism Development Manager Keith Bergman. “With new developments such as the Wigan Pier Quarter, Leigh Sports Village and the Grand Arcade Shopping Centre, the local tourism industry needs a stronger hub. One which will be able to support the additional interest and visitors.”

The new town centre location — in between Wigan’s two railway stations — will help the TIC become more financially sustainable.

It will become the place on the high street for all things travel and tourism-related. It will sell Destination Wigan branded merchandise and gifts; travel aids and products; guide books on destinations across the UK and the world.

The TIC will also include a specialist short break shop and an improved local and national event box office.

Ron Jones, chairman of Wigan Tourism Forum, says the opening of the new TIC will help to dispel some of the negative images that have been created about the borough. He said:

“In the past, Wigan has been an easy target. Well it’s now time to return fire and show the country just how good our hotels are; just how popular our attractions and events are; and just how beautiful our countryside is. With this new TIC we have the ideal shop window for our borough.”

Ron added:

“The centre is contemporary in both its look and the services it provides. It is a very exciting development and it is groundbreaking not just for Wigan but for the entire region.”

You can contact Wigan TIC on (01942) 825677.



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