Wakefield Cathedral is now home to the City’s and the Five Towns Visitor Information Point – thanks to a unique partnership between the Cathedral and the local authority.
And yesterday local visitor attractions including the Hepworth, the Theatre Royal, the National Trust, Welcome to Yorkshire, the Civic Societies of both Wakefield and Pontefract, the West Yorkshire Archive Service and the West Yorkshire Music Service gathered together to celebrate the union.
The Dean of Wakefield, the Very Revd Jonathan Greener and the deputy leader of Wakefield Council, Coun Denise Jeffrey, cut the ribbon together marking the official opening of the visitor centre inside the Cathedral’s Treacy Hall which is also home to the Cathedral’s coffee shop and bookshop.
Coun Denise Jeffrey said she had been upset about the decision to close the Visitor Information Point in the Bullring – and then the Cathedral had stepped in with its offer to help.
“Tourism is a very important part of our local economy and continuing the service in this way will help us to promote our district to residents and visitors.
“And here in this beautiful building in the heart of the city centre, we hope it too benefits from an increase in visitors,” she added.
The Cathedral has just reopened its doors after a £6.5m makeover which had focussed on renewing the Grade 1 listed building for mission and for use by the whole community.
And in his address, the Dean said that they had concentrated their minds on the renewal of the building and now that had been achieved and it looked stunning, they would be able to fulfill their missional role reaching out to local communities and travellers and the Visitor Information Point was an important signpost on that way.
The VIP inside the Treacy Hall has leaflets advertising a wide range of events and visitor attractions and will also feature a digital point where visitors can use the Experience Wakefield tourism website and access a range of information about what’s on in the area.