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A day in the life of...

Sam Leppard - Assistant Visitor Services Officer in the Communities Team


I most recently worked in Colchester at Firstsite and before that at the Mercury Theatre so I felt that working in the Visitor Information Centre would be a great way to both utilize the experience I have in Colchester's Cultural sector, and also to expand upon it.

An average week at work......

Alongside my colleagues our overarching goal is to promote Colchester as an attractive destination, and assist any visitors with finding their way around the town. Staffing the front desk and dealing with enquiries as they come in is a big part of this, but I also update and create the majority of content for the VisitColchester social media feeds and work closely with the Communications team on campaigns such as the current #IfOurWallsCouldTalk campaign.

I look after the council's tourism website keeping the event listings up to date, writing content, and ensuring that it includes everything a visitor to the town might need.
On top of this there's retail, ticket sales, and guided tours to organize, as well as keeping an eye on Hollytrees Museum, where we are based, for our colleagues in the Museum Service.

My job .......

Overall it's a great job, talking about Colchester with visitors is often very rewarding and allows me to see a town I've lived in all my life with fresh eyes. Working on social media and the website allows me to be creative to a certain degree, and it's always nice when a photo I've snapped on my way in to work gets a great reaction on Instagram, or people seem amused by one of my bad puns on twitter.

Similarly though, social media can be a bit like the wild west sometimes, and we occasionally get reactions that aren't helpful in promoting the town which can often be a challenge to deal with.

What's next?

I've been in the role less than a year so I feel like I've still got things to learn, particularly some of the more obscure aspects of Colchester history that we get quizzed on here, and of course the web and social media changes so fast that there's always new ways of engaging with people and ways to develop what we do as a team.