New Chief Recruited by CCT
Christchurch and Canterbury Tourism (CCT) has appointed a new interim chief executive, Vic Allen. An experienced tourism professional, Allen will join CCT later this month though his tenure is expected to be brief.
Christchurch City Council are proposing to merge CCT into a new tourism, events and economic development entity to try to boost the city's visitor numbers. Visitor Strategy documents say: "tourism, events, economic development and city promotion are inextricably linked and must be approached in a more joined up manner..."
Allen takes over from former head, Tim Hunter who resigned ahead of the plans to create the new tourism body. Hunter has since moved to become CEO of Southern Discoveries in Queenstown.
Hunter said domestic tourism had grown strongly in Christchurch and international numbers were less strong but were "picking back up". However many overseas tourists were still by-passing Christchurch which needed more accommodation capacity in the summer peak months he said.
Allen has broad experience in marketing and market development gathered during senior management roles he held at Christchurch Airport for 20 years as well as his work in airport development overseas. His industry knowledge and in-depth understanding of the Canterbury region’s tourism priorities are well regarded by the CCT board and he is seen as a steady hand to guide the CCT through this transition stage.
Allen will stay in the position until the new entity is operational, which the council has indicated could be July.