How to Set Up an Innovative Tourism Network in your Town!

Background

In 2013, Herefordshire County Council (HCC) closed Ross-on-Wye’s Tourist Information Centre (TIC) so, whilst the local Town Council was in negotiations with asset transfers, a local resident with a handful of Ross shops took it into their own hands to share visitor information and stock leaflets to those visiting the town.

However, over the next two years, local traders were becoming frustrated with tourists asking for visitor information and visitors were complaining that they didn’t know where to go to find out what was going on in Ross-on-Wye

What did we do?

Behind the scenes, an accomplice and I were galvanised into action after witnessing more than 15 shops close in November- December 2015. During a late night conversation, we talked about the resources and the options available.

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A Night at the Theatre in Ross

If you haven’t booked tickets yet for “All Things Considered” I suggest you do, as you wouldn’t want to miss this highly entertaining production of Ben Brown’s tragic-comedy.

I have to admit it is a while since I last saw a play at The Phoenix Theatre in Ross and I definitely won’t leave it so long before I go again. For a small provincial and amateur company the bar is set high and the audience is never left squirming in its seats as a result of poor performance or production values.

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Ross-on-Wye Tourist Information Sites, Mandy Moos Cafe

Mandy Moo’s has been open for over three years and, thanks to locals and visitors alike, this small laid back and (well behaved) dog-friendly Café has gone from strength to strength. With a 5 Star Food Hygiene rating and a 5 star TripAdvisor rating it seems to have found a winning formula by buying quality local and premium ingredients whilst achieving great value for money and excellent customer service. Owner Amanda Price commented “it’s hard work but I enjoy running the café enormously and find it great fun.”
Situated on Cantilupe Road, close to where it meets Gloucester Road, Mandy Moo’s started out as a take away salad, sandwich bar but soon changed into a café specialising in homemade cakes, scones, vegetarian soups, quiches and homemade meals and, of course, the AMAZING Salad Bar. You can call in for your breakfast (available all day and voted one of the best in town*) knowing it will be freshly cooked with nothing fried, or sample the veggie savoury or have a scrumptious cream tea. Once a month the Sunday Lunch Club is held. It is extremely popular and usually booked well in advance. If you would like to join please ring to add your name to the reserved list.

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Ross-on-Wye Visitor Information Sites, Mandy Moo’s Cafe

 

Mandy Price outside her cafe

Amanda outside Mandy Moo’s

Mandy Moo’s has been open for over three years and, thanks to locals and visitors alike, this small laid back and (well behaved) dog-friendly Café has gone from strength to strength. With a 5-Star Food Hygiene rating and a 5-Star TripAdvisor rating it seems to have found a winning formula by buying quality local and premium ingredients whilst achieving great value for money and excellent customer service. Owner Amanda Price commented “It’s hard work but I enjoy running the café enormously and find it great fun.”

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Dog Walk by the Wye

On a cold but sunny morning I set out with husband and dog for a leisurely walk down by the River Wye. A walk I hadn’t done for some time and was greatly looking forward to. We started from Cleeve Lane in Archenfield Road, walking past the entrance to Cleeve Farm, where the metalled road ends and becomes a track. Continuing down the lane, in the dappled sunlight, we past by an ancient orchard before going through a metal gate. At this point the path goes through a gap in the red sandstone cliff that the town of Ross-on-Wye sits upon.

Soon we were out in the open fields of the Wilton Sports Ground, avoiding the pitches, and heading straight for the river bank in front of us. When we reached the river we turned right and walked along the bank until we came to Wilton Bridge. On the opposite side of the river at this point you can see The White Lion PH and Wilton Court Restaurant with Rooms. Both offer a warm welcome and good food. To reach them you would have to take the steps up to the road and cross the ancient stone bridge.

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Ross-on-Wye Christmas Fayre & Christmas Light Switch-on

free-parkingThis Sunday, 20th November, sees the annual Ross-on-Wye Christmas Fayre and light switch-on in the town centre. The main event takes place between 11am and 5pm. Christmas lights will be switched-on at 4pm. Part of the High Street will be closed to accommodate stalls selling a variety of art and craft items plus food. Many of the towns shops will be opening and there is free parking in all of the County Council owned car parks for the day. Continue reading

Christmas Wishlists for Ross-on-Wye Shops

This year in Ross you can create Christmas Wishlists by filling in postcards and handing them to loved ones who might like some help choosing Christmas presents for you. This great idea was developed by Sally, of Madame Butterfly in Broad St, who had the cards printed and has distributed them around town centre businesses. So when you are in town and see something that would make your day on 25th December remember to pick-up a card and fill it in. The cards are currently available from:
Madame Butterfly
Crowsfeet
Truffles Delicatessen
Field Fayre – The Organic Storee
River Music
Lizzie Bunting
Little Chic Children’s Clothes and Toys Boutique
RAFT Clothing
Escape to the Great Outdoors
Eveamberlay Surefire Stoves Rosss
The Cookshop
SuzyC
Masons
Rossiter Books
Gallery 54
Mandy Moo’s
Pots and Pieces

Look out for these cards in Ross shops.

Look out for these cards in Ross shops.