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Business leaders urge council not to axe Tourism Development Forum

Business leaders have warned the council not to be complacent over the future of tourism in the borough.

Plans are currently in place to close the Tourism Development Forum when the number of councillors is reduced from 57 to 41 in May next year.

The forum provides an opportunity for businesses in the borough to discuss tourism issues with the council throughout the year.

Sunil Kalia, from Jetset Coaches, who operate in Windsor, said the forum was ‘invaluable’ during its latest meeting at the Guildhall on Monday (Nov26).

He said: “I think there could be a degree of complacency that could set in if we just think the Windsor brand will live on its own and do its magic for us.

“Here we have very good insight, ideas and creativity and a network beyond this room into respective business partners and channels.”

Cllr Sayonara Luxton (Con, Sunningdale) said if the planned closure went ahead, a forum could still run without councillor involvement.

Chris Ireland, operations director at Legoland, responded: “Surely it’s in the council’s interests to benefit tourism in Windsor rather than it being led by a local function?”

Cllr Nicola Prior (Con, Clewer North), chairing the meeting, said: “I don’t think it’s the end of your communication with councillors at this level, I just think it has to go in a different direction because the borough is going down to 41 members.”

The meeting also heard about plans for an Eton Visitor Information Centre.

The Eton Community Association is leading the project and has submitted a bid to the borough for £50,000 to redevelop 67 Eton High Street.

If approved, the centre could be open to the public on a part-time basis from Thursday to Sunday, coinciding with the opening hours of the Eton College Museum.

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