Peter Welch will “hang up his black ears” next year after nearly 30 years with Disney’s holidays division and some 40 years in the travel business.
Welch, who will bow out next February after 28 years with Disney, told TTG he felt “amazingly lucky” to have worked for the brand for such a long time.
During his 40-year career in travel, Welch has progressed from “working on the buses” in Merthyr Tydfil to heading up commercial operations at Disney Destinations International.
Following a stint as a rep on the Costa Brava, Welch joined British Airways as contracts manager and then area manager for Spain before moving into the hotel sector.
“[It was] then Mickey called and I joined a small UK Disneyland Paris team in Trafalgar Square 18 months before Disneyland opened in Paris,” Welch told TTG.
“I was their first account manager in Europe. Since then, I’ve worked through a number of Disney commercial roles and headed up their offices in Spain, Benelux and Germany.”
Welch returned to the UK 10 years ago to head up the company’s UK business before eventually taking responsibility for Walt Disney Travel Company in Europe, as well as developing the business’s in-house operations and Disney Cruise Line in Europe.
“After 28 years with Disney and 40 years in the industry, I’m hanging up my black ears,” Welch added. “I’ve been amazingly lucky to work for an incredible brand and with so many remarkable people. I’ve had great experiences and made great friends.”
He departs the company holding the roles of vice-president marketing and sales Disneyland Paris UK and Ireland, and vice-president commercial Walt Disney World and Disney Cruise Line EMEA.
Welch said his boutique hotel venture in Sri Lanka, Nos Da Hotel, would “keep him busy” following his departure from Disney.