Cherie Blair will be a guest speaker at next year’s Institute of Travel and Tourism conference.


The wife of former prime minister Tony Blair will give an insight into her life in politics. She was the first prime ­minister’s wife to have her own career.


Cherie has some knowledge of the travel industry as her mother was a travel agent for Lewis’s department store in Liverpool.


ITT chairman Steven Freudmann said: “This continues our theme of having big names from the world of politics.”


The ITT has already ­announced speakers including Thomas Cook group chief executive Manny Fontenla-Novoa and Peter Rothwell, who starts as chief executive of the Kuoni group in January. Previously he was deputy chief executive of TUI Travel.


The ITT is imposing a cap on delegate numbers of 400 for next year. It is cutting down on the number of media places and initially there will be a limit of two delegates per company. This will be reviewed at the end of February.


Bookings for next year’s event, which takes place from June 8-10 2009 at the InterContinental Festival City hotel in Dubai, are due to open next week at World Travel Market.


To see Travel Weekly’s ­coverage of this year’s ITT ­conference go to www.travelweekly.co.uk/itt2008 where you can read the news, blogs and watch TW TV