Create a Destination Partnership
Many destinations in Wales already have a cohesive group of interested stakeholders who work together to drive the sustainable development of their destination. This toolkit is designed for a destination where there has been no destination partnership previously or the partnership has not met in a long time and objectives and actions of the partnership need to be reviewed.
In academic terms all destinations have a life cycle, from its creation through its popularity, to its decline and hopefully to its rebirth rather than its final end.
(For anyone who’s interested in the academic stuff check out ‘Concept of a Tourist Area Cycle of Evolution’ Butler 1980)
Your destination may be at any one of these stages. If you are trying to create a destination or to revive a declining destination then creating or reviving a destination partnership is vital.
1. Define what you hope to achieve.
In most cases the development of an action plan is an opportunity to audit the current provision, find any gaps, plan what needs to be done to improve the situation and allocate jobs to each partner. If you already have an action plan but it is out of date, take the opportunity to update, amend and add to your old action plan using the same principles.
2. Involve all key stakeholders
Contact all the key stakeholders and ask them to send a representative to meet to discuss developing a Destination Action Plan. You may already know many of the people involved but make sure you widen the group to include stakeholders you may not have had contact with previously.
3. Partnership meeting
Arrange a meeting at a central location and give people enough notice, make sure they understand what you’re trying to achieve and why it’s important that they attend.
Your first meeting is an opportunity to establish relationships, get to know each other, find out what everyone does, why they want to be involved and what skills and resources they can offer.
Find out what policies, strategies or action plans each organisation has and see how far they have got in obtaining their goals and what barriers they have met along the way.
4. Establish and agree the objectives of the partnership group
Gain agreement from all partners that developing an action plan or updating an existing action plan will be the first objective of the group.
5. Agree the framework of the partnership group
Do you want to formalise the group by agreeing a terms of reference, appointing a chair and secretariat?
Your terms of reference should include:
A list of membership of the partnership group
A statement as to why the partnership group has been formed and what it’s objectives are
The roles and responsibilities of each member i.e. will one organisation in the group lead the development
You may wish to go further and constitute the group, you will need to draw up a constitution if you intend to apply for funding for the work of the group.
The action planning is next. A wider number of people may need to be involved in this process, and it is important to engage with the wider community and local businesses.