Shaping English tourism’s future
Round two of the Fund is supporting large scale projects as well as new smaller projects and pilots.
Two large-scale, collaborative projects secured funding for years two and three of the Fund’s operation, following on from the successful completion of their Round one Fund supported pilot project. The Great West Way, England’s first long-distance touring route between London and Bristol, received £1 million with a 40% match contribution by VisitWiltshire and partners.
England’s Coast, which enables visitors to create custom coastal itineraries, also received £1m from the Discover England fund with a 40% match contribution by the National Coastal Tourism Academy.
Meanwhile, new pilot projects announced for year two include:
- Royal Racecourses – The ‘Sport of Kings’ (overseen by Cheshire West and Chester Council) offers experience-led itineraries combining luxury accommodation and renowned racecourses for Chinese and Middle Eastern visitors.
- New packages developed by Contiki for 18-35 year olds from Asia, Australia, Canada, Europe, New Zealand, South Africa and USA, bring together landmarks, heritage and accommodation.
- A new ‘food and drink hub’ concept, trialled by Destination Bristol to build on the city’s growing gourmet reputation and create a blueprint for other cities across England.
Over the course of 2016/17, we developed a research programme designed to support product development across England. It has provided vital insights into international visitor preferences regarding leisure activity and accommodation for the benefit of businesses and destinations of all sizes.
In addition to research into forward-thinking approaches and concept generation, there were practical case studies revealing the latest thinking on product development from around the world.
Our ‘London Plus’ research provided insights into capitalising on the appeal of England’s regions. Destination Reports for 20 key English tourism locations revealed how the industry - and the public - view England’s tourism offer outside the capital.
To help English business event organisers enhance their offer and encourage business visitors to extend their trip for leisure purposes, the programme covered research into motivations and barriers to attracting business events as well as insights into ‘business extenders’.