The Hard is the perfect place for a visitor centre

COMMENT: Carrier sends out a strong message to the world

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Eddie Booker can’t understand the decision to close the tourist centre at The Hard and we think he’s got a point.

Portsmouth City Council has set out its reasons for not renewing the lease of the building near to the entrance of the Historic Dockyard.

But there are many people who will argue that it’s a rather short-sighted move on the council’s part.

Of course we understand that people access their information in a variety of different ways these days.

The internet gives us power at our fingertips to look things up for ourselves at our own leisure, either while we’re on the move, or from the comfort of our own homes.

Not everyone has access to the internet though and getting your information direct from someone who has knowledge and expertise can be invaluable.

What better location could there be to find those experts than a visitor centre right at the very hub of what’s going on?

The Hard is the traditional entry point for visitors stopping off in Portsmouth. You can arrive there by coach, rail or ferry.

The Historic Dockyard is one of the city’s most popular destinations. So having the visitor centre on the doorstep has always been a great way to reach out to those who want to explore what more the city has to offer.

Expanding the tourism service currently on offer at the D-Day Museum isn’t a bad idea, but there’s a valid argument to suggest that if you’ve already made it to the seafront, you’ve got a clear idea of where you’re going and what you want to see.

As a city we must do everything in our power to attract visitors and then give them a good experience while they are here.

Giving them easy access to all the information they need – plus people who can answer their questions in person – is invaluable.

We understand that all budgets have to be looked at in an effort to make every pound go further.

But we should be increasing the way people find out about the attractions we have on offer, not restricting the tools we use to do the job.