Norfolk

Holiday resort boss Brian Potter dies aged 73

Brian Potter Image copyright Potters Resort
Image caption Brian Potter was made an MBE in 2012 for services to tourism

The entrepreneur and holiday firm boss who brought the World Indoor Bowling Championships to Norfolk has died aged 73.

Brian Potter took over the running of family firm Potters Resort holiday village, near Gorleston, in 1984.

Mr Potter oversaw the growth of the complex to 700 beds, the resort said.

Keith Brown, from Visit East Anglia, said: "He was one of the originators in developing new markets for short breaks in the 1960s and 1970s."

Mr Potter, who was born on 17 December 1940, died from cancer on Tuesday.

The company was founded by his grandfather Herbert Potter about a century ago.

'Very charismatic'

The first permanent timber huts at the Hopton-on-Sea site were built in 1920 and the complex now boasts 200 bungalows and a hotel.

Mr Potter was made an MBE in 2012 for services to tourism.

Image copyright Empics
Image caption The World Indoor Bowls Championship have been staged in Hopton-on-Sea since 1998
Image copyright Google
Image caption Potters opened as a holiday resort in 1920 and remains family-owned

A statement from Potters Resorts said: "It was his foresight, determination and drive that ensured that not only did Potters survive as the last of the pioneering family-owned resorts in the country, but thrived.

"He developed an out-of-season midweek business by focusing and investing in bowls and filled the weekends with entertainment-led short breaks that anticipated the UK leisure industry's shift from longer holidays."

Mr Brown, chief executive of Visit East Anglia, said: "I met him several times and he was always a good sounding board for new ideas.

"He saw the importance of tourism from a regional perspective, rather than purely for the the benefit of his own business."

The World Indoor Bowls Championships have been staged at the resort since 1998.

Richard Maddieson, World Bowls Tour chief executive, said: "By putting the whole of his resources behind the event it has become the flagship of bowls, whereas before its profile was nowhere near as high.

"He was very charismatic, always had a big smile, always had time for everyone and he will be sorely missed."

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