Welcome to tourism-jobs.co.uk! This has been a website a few years in the making and I wanted to introduce you to the why, what and who of it in this first blog post.
I’m Shona and I came up with the idea of this website, and even bought the domain name and set up other aspects of it, back in early 2015. But due to life getting in the way it has taken me until the past few months to develop that into what you see today on March 1st 2017. So here’s a little bit of the story behind me, and this jobs board focussed on the tourism industry.
I have been involved in the tourism (and hospitality) industry since I started working at the grand old age of 14. I grew up in Dorset, where tourism is a way of life. I started my working life as many do, as a waitress, and worked in a local pub for 3 years. When I left school I took a year out to train and work as a ski instructor. The training didn’t come cheap and I worked 3 jobs during the summer before as a waitress, lifeguard and as a tourism assistant in the tourist information centre in Poole. Some days I even fit in all 3 jobs in one day. After my gap year I studied Geography at Edinburgh University, worked as a ski instructor at the dry ski slope and in Europe in the holidays, and returned to Poole’s Tourist Information Centre for 2-3 months every summer.
The only photos I could find from my Poole Tourism days
By my final year at University I had decided that I really loved the tourism industry and I had also spent a lot of my degree looking at sustainability and environmental impact, and had found out that you could combine the two – responsible tourism. I interned one day a week through my final year at Dunira Strategy, a sustainable tourism consultancy. Here I worked on some great projects in the UK and abroad (desk research only unfortunately) including an aviation heritage tourist attraction, country park commercial development and writing bid documents for project in South America. I even managed to twist my dissertation into an opportunity to combine both, looking at environmental impacts caused by the Olympic sailing events and increased visitor pressure in my home county. By Easter in my final year, I was job searching and spent a lot of time on a website that specialised in advertising jobs in the environmental sector. This is where I came across a role at the New Forest National Park Authority that felt like it had been created for me – Sustainable Travel Ambassador. The job was to be manning a mobile information point encouraging visitors to the National Park to travel sustainably around the National Park and also to act responsibly in this protected environment. Tourism and environmental responsibility, just what I was interested in.
Roaming the New Forest National Park
After the summer came to an end, really serendipitously, another role became vacant at the National Park Authority – Transport and Tourism Officer. The role was really varied; acting as the National Park liaison with the local tourist board, working on campaigns to encourage responsible behaviour from visitors, developing fun sustainable travel initiatives, working with other National Parks in the UK on national campaigns as well as with the national tourist boards amongst other things. Unfortunately, as funding constraints increased, the tourism part of my job grew smaller and smaller and I realised that the job was no longer something I wanted to do or was passionate about (HGV restrictions, resurfacing of roads and road signage policy unfortunately doesn’t excite me). As I set myself a 6 month deadline to find a new job, I found that I was now looking more within the tourism industry (albeit with a preference on an environmental focus) and I could not find a website that worked in the same way as the one focussed on the environmental sector where I knew I could check in every day and find plenty of relevant jobs. I found the job hunt very time-consuming and exhausting, trawling so many different websites every day to try to find new job openings. I was so frustrated by the fact that the tourism-equivalent didn’t exist.
And there was born the idea of tourism-jobs.co.uk. Towards the end of my job hunt, after an unsuccessful final interview in visitor services, I took 2 weeks of annual leave and headed off to my favourite place – the mountains – to work as a ski instructor and to have a think about what to do. When I came back, I contacted everyone I knew who might be interested in me being self-employed, got some work off the back of that, and handed my notice in on the Monday. Having employed freelancers and contractors, and knowing that there must be other people like me who were in need of a tourism-focussed jobs board, I bit the bullet and left the world of full-time employment.
However, just as my notice period came to an end, I was offered a part-time maternity cover role at Visit Winchester, working as Tourism Marketing and Development Officer with a focus on their digital platforms. So along with some brilliant project work (working back at the New Forest National Park Authority ironically alongside other marketing projects in the tourism and ski industry) and 3 days at Visit Winchester, tourism-jobs.co.uk fell to the wayside. Visit Winchester was all-consuming and fabulous with exciting marketing projects focussing around website development, Christmas, Jane Austen and social media marketing. But as the maternity cover headed towards its finish, I started the job hunt again and tourism-jobs.co.uk came back to the forefront of my mind. With two subsequent house moves and other work commitments in between, here we finally are!
Christmas celebrations at Visit Winchester
So, what is tourism-jobs.co.uk and what are we not?
Well, we are a jobs board focussed on jobs in the tourism industry in the UK, and by that I mean jobs at tourist boards, visitor attractions, educating others about tourism, and other tourism related businesses. Jobs in marketing, research, visitor services and front-of-house, and education. What we won’t be advertising are roles in hospitality (food and beverage services), the travel industry (travel agents, airline services, tour operators) and hotel services. Yes, this is niche, but there is a gap at the moment for people who work in the Travel and Tourism Industry (often lumped together as one) but who want to focus on the Tourism side of that. If you’re interested in roles in the missing industries from this website, I suggest looking here:
The aim is that this website will become the go-to place for job seekers and job advertisers for the tourism industry in the UK. So thanks for helping it to get there! And this blog will hopefully be somewhere useful for resources, advice and information about the tourism industry and tourism jobs in the UK.
We do not work as a recruitment agency, all applications are made by the applicant directly to the organisation recruiting. We also do not work with recruitment agencies, only direct with the organisation recruiting for the role.
If you’re a job-seeker, sign up here to receive a weekly update of newly advertised vacancies here.
Or have a browse of current vacancies here: www.tourism-jobs.co.uk
If you’re recruiting for a role in the tourism industry, you can register and submit your vacancy here.
Thanks for visiting