Visit Devon has said that it welcomes the new VisitEngland initiative which has been allocated almost £20 million through the Regional Growth Fund. The initiative aims to get economies outside of London stimulated by launching a Government backed advertising campaign encouraging Britons to holiday at home.
Although Devon is not currently among the 14 primary tourism partners selected, Visit Devon says that it recognises there are still many opportunities to become engaged with the campaign which is looking to capitalise on the feel-good factor surrounding the London Olympics and the Queen's Diamond Jubilee next year.
Estimates say if the 13 per cent increase in domestic tourism is maintained until the end of the year it would mean an increase of £2.7 billion for the UK economy – enough to create more than 50,000 jobs spread across the whole of the UK. The £20 million will be used on a three-year project entitled Growing Tourism Locally.
Rosie Bates, General Manager of Visit Devon, comments, “We are pleased that VisitEngland have managed to secure funding to support local tourism economies across the country. Whilst we are not a primary destination, we look forward to working with VisitEngland and tourism businesses within Devon to ensure that we are involved in the thematic campaigns that are planned, this will of course require match funding from the private sector.”
VisitEngland, which will buy television, newspaper and Internet space, is yet to decide the size of the slice of the cash each area will get. A series of thematic campaigns focusing on countryside, heritage, coastal and business tourism will run alongside.
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Visit Devon is the destination management organisation responsible for promoting Devon to the world. The organisation acts as a voice for tourism in Devon and its aim is simple - to increase the number of visitors to Devon by promoting the county as a year-round destination for business or leisure. The organisation brings together, adds value to and enhances the work and activities undertaken by the six Area Tourism Partnerships across the county. Visit Devon is committed to growing the tourism sector sustainably, increasing the skills within the industry, and raising the quality of the visitor experience. Visit Devon is a public-private partnership limited by guarantee. The not for profit company comprises nine member organisations including the six Area Tourism Partnerships (The Heart of Devon, Visit Plymouth, North Devon+, The Dartmoor Partnership, The English Riviera Tourist Board, and Visit South Devon, Devon County Council, The Devon Association of Tourist attractions (Data), and Devon Farms. Visit Devon is the trading name of Destination Devon Ltd.
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