A NEW business group has been set up in Pickering to promote the town and showcase its facilities to a wider area.

Welcome to Pickering, which will be launched on March 26, includes more than 40 businesses with a new website, which will go live at the event in the Memorial Hall.

The group aims to offer an opportunity for all businesses to work together to promote themselves, the town and the area.

Funds for the website have been provided by the North York Moors National Park and Pickering Town Council, and in addition to information about local firms, it will also provide details of the town, including events, attractions and community groups.

Neil Armstrong, from Trailblazer Outdoors, who is one of the members, said: “We want all types of businesses involved so visitors can see everything the town has to offer.

“Our intention is to give everyone a basic directory listing, but for £50 members get an enhanced listing and pictures and become part of the Welcome to Pickering Community.

“Our aim is to promote the town and develop future events and coordinated activity.

“We are already involved in plans for the Tour deYorkshire and would encourage everyone to participate in this, it is another great opportunity to showcase the town to the whole world.”

Councillor William Oxley, a fellow business group member and town councillor, said it was encouraging that Pickering had no empty shops or business premises, which was something few market towns in the UK could claim.

“Welcome to Pickering is good news and it is fantastic to see the businesses driving this initiative and looking to play a more prominent part in the town,” he said. “We want all residents to benefit from the greater economic activity this will produce. We hope this will link to the Ryedale Market Towns initiative, being supported by Ryedale District Council and Welcome to Yorkshire.”

For more information, contact Matthew Wilkinson, at Television House, or Mr Armstrong at Trailblazer Outdoors.