The countdown to the 4th August began many months ago, with societies, museums, history groups, schools, universities and various other organisations and individuals planning how best to commemorate the day.
As the day itself arrived, international and local news, web, press and social media was full of information and images of what was going on around the world to mark the outbreak of war.
As well as many Church services taking place across the county, here are some of the other events that took place on the day:
- Prince Harry unveiled Step Short‘s First World War Memorial Arch in Folkestone – for a video of the event plus more news articles, visit the BBC News website.
- Ashford’s historic World War One tank, the last of its kind, was guarded by members of 133 Field Company Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers for the 24 hours of August 4 – read more about the tank here and view other Ashford commemorations here.
- Kent County Council opened their commemorative exhibition, ‘In their own words’ focusing of the people of Kent during the First World War – see opening times here.
- Tunbridge Wells poet Siegfried Sassoon’s First World War journals have been published online by the University of Cambridge – read more from BBC news here or view the digital journals here.
- Tenterden railway which carried First World War hero Edith Cavell’s body, to be on BBC2 show Railways of the Great War, Friday 6.30pm – read more about the Kent & East Sussex Railway’s part in this here.
There are many other events, activities and projects taking place across the country; take a look at the Visit Kent’s Frontline Kent website for full details.
The Marketing Working Group met on 17th September 2013 to discuss next steps. The highlights from the meeting are:
It was agreed that “Frontline Kent” will be an umbrella brand for not only WWI but can encompass all commemorations around conflict during this period ie WWII 75th Anniversary.
The four year campaign will:
- To maximise the opportunity and to raise the profile of Kent and its role as a frontline county
- To bring attractions and destinations together to plan coordinated activities around Frontline Kent and the key anniversaries.
- To promote these to visitors under a consistent “brand” from a central portal
- To attract inbound visitors and visitor spend
- To encourage repeat visitors
- Single brand – Frontline Kent
- Single portal / CTA
- Kent residents (editorial message needs to be different for residents)
- London and 2 hour drive team
- Near European
- Volunteers (to assist with events)
Read the full minutes here: Frontline Kent Marketing Group – Minutes 17_09_13
Tourism in Kent and Medway by Cheryl Parker
Tourism in Kent and Medway has never experienced the benefits of substantial national and regional government funding. As a result, Visit Kent formed in 2002, developed a collaborative approach in order to fund its operation and what has emerged is a public/private sector partnership supported by Kent County Council, Medway Council, the District and Borough Councils, and the leading private sector tourism businesses.
Visit Kent is responsible for promoting Kent as an attractive destination for holidays and events and enhancing the tourism industry, its infrastructure and product base in Kent. Visit Kent is recognised by the two upper tier local authorities Kent County Council and Medway Council, the 12 district councils and the South East LEP as the official Destination Management Organisation (DMO) for Kent and Medway responsible for working in partnership to support and grow the tourism industry in the County.
We provide a wide range of information, expert advice and hands-on support to Kent’s tourism industry, from information about marketing opportunities and up-to-date media information to access to our many research and development projects, training courses and much more.
Tourism contributes £3.2 billion to the Kent and Medway economy, supports more than 63,000 jobs and 3,000 businesses (Cambridge Economic Impact Survey 2009). We want Kent to be the first choice destination for day visits and short breaks. We are confident we can meet this challenge by working together with our private and public sector partners to make our county stand out in the market place, to harness all investment opportunities and enhance our visitor offer.
Our key measurable objectives are:
- To increase day and short break visits to Kent
- To increase the value of tourism to Kent
- Encourage visitors to use ‘green’ transport for environmental benefits (and increase public transport borne visitors to destinations and attractions)
- To build a database of positive visitor reviews of Kent (user-generated content)
Visit Kent & the Frontline Kent Group
We are happy to lead and/or have input into the Marketing/PR working group and any other group that you feel is relevant to us. There will not be any hidden or unexpected charges with our involvement in the Frontline Kent Group, as we are keen to see tourism product develop in Kent and play a part in facilitating that development.
We do have a number of investors at Visit Kent who do receive priority in terms of marketing. However, all tourism businesses in Kent, including events, are entitled to free promotional activity. Some museums and events organisations will find that they have entries on the Visit Kent website via their District Council as we have partnership agreements in place with them and they are investors. However, we are happy to talk to any Museum or attraction about investment in Visit Kent and generally will prepare bespoke proposals based on their requirements and budget; we do welcome working with smaller attractions as these are the ‘hidden gems’ of a destination and a vital part of the overall appeal.
E: Cheryl.Parker@visitkent.co.uk for Frontline Kent
Tel: 01227 812917