Whistlestop tour introduces South-East to North-East

Tourism buyers are heading for the region this weekend, when the North-East's cultural icons will be showcased.

Tourism buyers are heading for the region this weekend, when the North-East's cultural icons will be showcased.

From Sunday to Wednesday, organisers from the South-East of England - many of whom have never set foot in the region before - will take part in a whistle-stop familiarisation visit across most of the North-East.

Supported by development agency One NorthEast's tourism team, coordinated by Corbridge tourism specialist Steve Reed Tourism and supported by businesses, the event is intended to generate tourism business in the shape of group travellers.

The guests will be taking in the Sage Gateshead, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Arts and the Gateshead Millennium Bridge, the soon-to-be-opened Woodhorn mining attraction in Ashington followed by lunch at the Macdonald Linden Hall Hotel in Longhorsley and a tour of the Alnwick Garden and Castle.

County Durham's gems will follow, including Durham City and the award-winning Beamish museum for a tour and lunch. Group sales co-ordinator for One Northeast Denise Wigham said: "We want them to bring their business back next year and in years to come too."

Robert Brooks

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