HRL Tourism works with councils and communities to develop innovative and achievable solutions to grow local community economies through tourism and manage the complex visitor industry issues. David brings his nationally sought-out tourism expertise to assist the community, the local tourism industry, and central and local government. HLR developed the 'Freedom Camping Solutions' website which is the most frequented website for managing these community issues.

Tourism Reports

1. RTOs and Councils - Asking the right questions 2018

This national report from David Hammond and Lyn Cheyne addresses the right KPIs between RTOs and Councils, their structure and funding for an effective tourism sector. They emphasise that this is a guide not a blueprint. Read the report here: RTOs and Councils.

2. Value for Money? Tourism Spend in New Zealand Local Government 2015/16

In this national report David Hammond surveys all councils on their tourism expenditure in support of the tourism industry. As well as the report revealing that the sector contributed to at least $140M in spend in 2015/16 there are large inequities between regions of New Zealand. Whilst Auckland ratepayers spend very little per ratepayer on tourism, those from small rural areas with natural tourism attractions are spending well above their fair share on the industry. Read the report here: Value for Money?

On-the ground Experience

1. 2017. Waratah-Wynyard Council

HRL Tourism completed a Destination Management Priorities Plan for this local authority in Tasmania, providing future direction on tourism priorities and investment. HRL developed a unique approach, Destination Management "Site Assessments", to evaluate the tourism industry in local areas.

Waratah DMP

Workshopping with the community:

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Public interest in the project:

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2. 2016-17. Freedom Camping Support

HRL Tourism is New Zealand's recognised leader in supporting local government with freedom camping solutions. We are the one-stop-resource for all councils, ministries and companies on freedom camping. HRL is the only company offering full freedom camping support services to councils. This includes Freedom Camping Strategic Plans (to manage demand and supply), Site Assessments to justify council decisions according to Law, Freedom Camping Bylaw reviews and development, training of enforcement officers, reviewing of enforcement systems, reviewing of council enforcement forms, information, and more. 

Website: (one-stop resource for Freedom Camping support)

Freedom Camping Strategic Plan:

An example of an innovative Freedom Camping Strategic Plan HRL has developed (below).

Nelson FC Cover

Freedom Camping Free Video Training:

 3. 2017 Waratah Promotions Plan and Tourism Association, Tasmania

HRL Tourism along with Lyn Cheyne (refer to HRL "Contact Us" page) developed a Promotions Plan and Tourism Association for the amazing tourism area of Waratah on the edge of the Tarkine Wilderness. Through community workshops and meetings including with stakeholders a promotions plan was developed to guide future development of the industry in this area. The team worked with council to get the right approach to the industry leading and the council in support. The approach included the team staying different accommodation in the area to support the community and also to learn first hand about the accommodation, hospitality and tourism sector and understand what visitors report about the area to the operators. 

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4. 2016-17 Nelson City Freedom Camping Bylaw

HRL Tourism provided the support for Nelson City Council to conduct a strategic review of its approach to Freedom Camping, Site Assessment led the development of a new Bylaw for the City in 2017. A very successful process and the most innovate solutions in New Zealand were adopted and developed by HRL. These included an approach to homelessness, an innovative and field-leading Site Assessment for freedom camping and the building-in of freedom camping assessments into new sport facility and reserves design. The freedom camping strategy crafted by David Hammond has proved a major success.

Nelson Freedom Camping

5. 2015-16. Chairman and Founder of the New Zealand Tourism Councils Workgroup

David established NZTCW in 2015 and chaired this until his leaving the local government sector in March 2016. NZTCW provides research, advocacy and advisory services to the sector, tourism industry and government. The workgroup advanced projects such as a Good Practice Guide for councils in measuring value from tourism investment, and addressing the negative effects of freedom camping across New Zealand. The group identified the infrastructure gap in New Zealand which led to the advocacy with government for more funding to be directed to local areas. The Workgroup also provided the impetus for the national report on tourism performance with councils in 2016 which identified the total spend of councils on tourism in that year ($140M) and the average spent by councils on the tourism sector ($37.90 per person).


National Research:


6. Chairman Rangitikei-Ruapehu-Wanganui Regional Partnership Programme Trust

David chaired a collaboration of three districts, twelve Iwi, three RTOs, two Government Ministries and 120 tourism businesses aiming to pull the Central North Island out of economic recession. David chaired the collaboration until successful conclusion of the development programme.

7. 2009-11. Project Leader Te Kahui Tupua

As well as Chairing the Regional partnership Programme, David took over as Project Leader of a $2.8M project part way through at a time when delivery was failing. That project won two national awards for success, and 90% satisfaction from tourism operators. David’s own District enjoyed 0.2% economic growth in 2010 (compared to national decline of -2.5%). With his organisation's $6.5M of investment committed to tourism, David calculated that they leveraged a further $26M from external funders.

Case Study: 



2010 Local Government Supreme Award Winner (NZ Post / SOLGM) for Best Project in Local Government for regional tourism development. His role was Project Leader.

2010 Tourism Awards Winner (TIANZ) best local government project in support of the national tourism industry.


TKT John Key

Phone: +64 27 444 6368
Postal: 20 Merrimana Drive, Thames 3500,
New Zealand

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