Brecon Beacons Tourism (BBT) has appointed a new Executive Director.

The private-sector organisation, which is dedicated to promoting and developing tourism in the Bannau Brycheiniog/Brecon Beacons National Park, has announced Julie Bell will be taking over the role.

Ms Bell replaces Laura Thomas who is moving onto new challenges after 10 years at the helm.

Colin Evans, Chairman of BBT said: “Brecon Beacons Tourism owes immense gratitude to Laura Thomas for her tireless contributions, which have laid a solid foundation for our journey.

“As we welcome Julie Bell, we’re confident that her passion for the area and her extensive background in tourism will usher in a new era of growth and collaboration. My whole board will be on hand to support her in this pivotal role.”

Ms Bell came to the area for a few months in 2006 and ended up staying for 17 years and counting. She brings a wealth of experience to the role; formerly at the helm of a Michelin-starred restaurant in Northern Ireland and, since 2006, General Manager at the award-winning pub with rooms, The Felin Fach Griffin near Brecon. Her background is steeped in the world of tourism and hospitality.

“I am interested in creating relationships between all the different aspects of tourism and the national park,” said Ms Bell.

“We all need to work together to create a sustainable and vibrant future and I’m honoured to lead Brecon Beacons Tourism, an organisation that plays a pivotal role in shaping the narrative of this extraordinary place.”

Ms Bell is a seasoned climber at Llangorse Rope Centre, a botany enthusiast recording with the Brecknock recording group, a trained Mountain Leader, and a mental health advocate.

With this new appointment the Board believes that they can take BBT to new heights, ensuring sustainability, collaboration, and a vibrant future for tourism in the national park.

Ms Bell will be holding drop-in sessions for members (and those interested in becoming members) at various locations around the national park throughout October and November.

For details of these please email [email protected]