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Fears for future of tourist info centre

PUBLISHED: 10:20 23 July 2009 | UPDATED: 11:09 12 July 2010

Fears have been raised about the future of the Diss Tourist Information Centre after it emerged that the district council had reduced its opening hours.

Fears have been raised about the future of the Diss Tourist Information Centre after it emerged that the district council had reduced its opening hours.

Civic leaders have spoken of their disappointment after South Norfolk Council took the decision to downgrade the opening of the visitor centre from six to five days a week.

As of last week, the Diss TIC will be closed every Tuesday as a result of a reduction in the number staff at the Mere's Mouth building.

But officials from South Norfolk Council said they had no further plans to downgrade the tourist information centre, which received almost 60,000 enquiries last year.

Diss Town Councillors spoke of their anger on Wednesday night after it was revealed that the TIC was reducing the number of opening days just before the start of the summer holidays.

Mayor Jane Trippett-Jones said the centre provided a valuable service in Diss.

“I am not happy it is shut on Tuesdays, but I appreciate that they [South Norfolk Council] are allegedly trying to safeguard jobs. It is one of the busiest places in Diss and has a huge impact on the economy. It is a great shame,” she said.

Simon Olander, former mayor, added that Tuesday was traditionally seen as a half day for shops in Diss, but that was no longer the case for the majority of retailers.

“At a time when we are trying to get the town revitalised, to close the TIC on a Tuesday is not good enough. I can understand the council doing it in October or November, but not in the summer,” he said.

The facility is the only TIC in south Norfolk that is run entirely by the district council. Centres in Wymondham, Loddon, and Harleston, are run by other organisations. The Diss TIC will remain open from 10am to 4pm on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Martin Wilby, deputy Leader and cabinet member for place and performance at South Norfolk Council, said: “We have recently moved from three part-time staff to two at the TIC, and to maintain our duty of care to them, the TIC from this week closes on Tuesday as well as on a Sunday as normal. Our objective is to continue to provide a high standard of service in Diss.”


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