The four two-minute documentary-style films, created by BBC StoryWorks, BBC Advertising’s commercial content production arm, challenge the perceptions of traditional Britain, offering a modern take on the stunning landscapes, fashion, culture and history, and will air on BBC's commercial, international news channel, BBC World News, to an American audience between October 2017 to March 2018.
Focusing on London, Manchester, Scotland and Wales, the films each feature a well-known local personality; science and technology reporter Dr Shini Somara, illustrator Stanley Chow, fashion designer Siobhan Mackenzie and TV presenter Gethin Jones. The ‘local heroes’ talk about how their British roots have inspired them, with the films highlighting and showcasing some of the experiences to be found in each region.
VisitBritain Commercial Director Carol Dray said:
"These films will inspire American visitors to book a trip right now for experiences they can only get in Britain, from seeing the Meridian Line in Greenwich to drawing inspiration at a coffee shop in Manchester, from discovering the history of Caernarforn Castle in Wales to dolphin spotting at Chanory Point in the Scottish Highlands.”
VP Western Europe, BBC Advertising, Guy Hughes-Wilson said:
"We are enormously proud of our partnership with VisitBritain, and of these four new films we have created. Each person featured in the films is passionate about where they are from, and that really brings these beautifully made mini documentary-style films to life.”
The partnership is funded jointly by the UK Government’s global GREAT campaign, which showcases what Britain has to offer as a place to visit, study and do business, and the local destination management organisations, London & Partners, Marketing Manchester, VisitScotland and Visit Wales.
The US is Britain’s most valuable inbound visitor market and also one of its largest. Latest figures from VisitBritain show that there were 1.9 million visits from the US to the UK in the first six months of this year, a 31% increase on the period last year. Visitors from the US spent £1.8 billion between January and June this year, a 28% increase on the same period last year.
Last year was a record-breaker for inbound tourism to the UK, with 37.6 million overseas visits, up 4% on 2015, and spending of £22.5 billion, up 2% on 2015.
Tourism is worth £127 billion to the UK economy, creating jobs and boosting economic growth across its nations and regions.