TTG LGBT is embarking on its fourth year with a host of new events and three new partners. Sophie Griffiths speaks to them about their support of the initiative.
TTG LGBT is entering its fourth year, with three new partners and a raft of new events.
The Travel Network Group, Emerald Waterways and Thomas Cook Airlines have all joined existing partners Hoseasons, The Malta Tourism Authority and the Israel Government Tourist Office as well as headline partner Celebrity Cruises, in supporting TTG LGBT as the initiative gears up for year four.
Gary Lewis, chief executive of The Travel Network Group, said the consortium was “delighted” to support TTG LGBT. “As a team we share an enormous passion for what we do,” he said. “Together we strive to create an open working environment that provides equal opportunities for everyone to flourish, and the freedom and support for individuals to be their true selves at work.”
David Winterton, head of marketing and global brand curator for Emerald Waterways, said: “I first became aware of the great work of the TTG LGBT team when Emerald Waterways launched the UK’s first LGBT river cruise in 2016. Having attended several of the TTG LGBT events since then, I jumped at the opportunity to become a key partner. I look forward to showing how river cruising is a great holiday option for LGBT customers.”
Julie Armstrong, director of human resources at Thomas Cook Airlines, said: “We are looking forward to the year ahead as a TTG partner. We embrace and embed diversity in every corner of our business to both enrich the working environment for our employees and better anticipate the needs of our customers.
“Inclusivity brings with it new perspectives, and we look forward to sharing and supporting all of TTG’s partners in diversity topics and initiatives in 2018.”
Jo Rzymowska, vice-president and managing director UK, Ireland and Asia, of Celebrity Cruises, which is headline partner of TTG LGBT, added: “Supporting TTG LGBT over the past three years has been a privilege; we’re incredibly proud to continue our support in its fourth year.
“I have had the chance to speak with so many industry colleagues at TTG’s LGBT events, who share Celebrity Cruises’ passion to build a diverse and representative workforce; the efforts across all levels of the travel industry are incredibly inspiring. TTG LGBT has led the conversation from the front and been a supportive and vocal champion for all of those who share in the values of respect and acceptance. We’re looking forward to continuing to be a part of that conversation in 2018.”
This year will see a number of new events, including a debate and an event in Birmingham, in addition to the return of the Manchester and London networking events, and the TTG LGBT Conference and Travel Pride in July.
The first event of year four will take place next week on March 1 at Southwark Cathedral, London. A panel featuring speakers from new co-partners including Gary Lewis, chief executive of the Travel Network Group; David Winterton, head of marketing and global brand curator for Emerald Waterways; and Andrew Sanderson, customer marketing manager, Thomas Cook Airlines, will discuss why TTG LGBT is still necessary in 2018 and how it can continue to evolve.
Meanwhile, May will see a new TTG LGBT event in Birmingham, with LGBT members of the travel industry, as well as allies, invited to network and listen to an inspirational speaker.
March 1: The TTG LGBT Debate, Southwark Cathedral, London, 3-5pm
May 2: TTG LGBT in Birmingham, Island Bar, Birmingham, 6.30pm until late
July 4: TTG LGBT Conference, Tropicana Beach Club, London, 9.30am-6pm
July 4: Travel Pride, Tropicana Beach Club, 7pm until late (invite only)
September: TTG LGBT Manchester, venue TBC
November/December: TTG LGBT London, venue TBC