In November 2015, the Government announced a £40 million Discover England Fund; an unprecedented opportunity for English tourism. The Fund aims to deliver world-class bookable tourism products joined up across geographies and/or themes to provide an end-to-end customer experience.
Cumbria Tourism is continuing to work with VisitEngland and other partners on a number of projects to target international visitors. Here is an update on the initiatives taking place with the help of Discover England Fund.
The Northern World Heritage Collection
Following the successful World Heritage Site Product Feasibility Study conducted in early 2018, Cumbria Tourism are proud to be leading the ‘Northern World Heritage Collection’ – a £250,000 project telling the story of England’s culture and heritage through the North’s outstanding UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
The project will enable businesses to better target both groups and independent travellers from the USA and Ireland. Irishman Fionn Davenport is an experienced travel journalist, who has worked on two other Discover England Fund projects, and his role will span business and itinerary development, training and trade shows, marketing, online content, film and PR.
He will be partnering with a range of businesses and tourism bodies across fellow Northern World Heritage sites like Liverpool and Durham over the coming months, as well as working alongside tour operators and agents to help visitors book their trips to multiple World Heritage sites across the North quickly and easily.
Discover England’s Great Walking Trails
Cumbria Tourism has been running a series of workshops to help businesses close to Hadrian’s Wall and the Pennine Way access three key international travel markets: Germany, the Netherlands and the USA.
The free workshops in Alston, Appleby and Carlisle were well-attended by tourism businesses who want to ensure they are ready to welcome walkers and cater for the specific needs of different international visitors and can work effectively with overseas tour operators to increase sales.
The English National Parks Experience Collection
This collaboration of nine of England’s National Parks is creating a joined-up, internationally branded collection of bookable immersive experiences, supported by accommodation. Cumbria Tourism is working on behalf of the Lake District National Park to provide business support, workshops and a trade marketing strategy which can be used by Cumbrian businesses targeting the Australian and German markets.
In December 2018, we held a workshop open to all tourism businesses which provided training to the how businesses can attract international visitors. Topics during the session included, developing memorable experiences, understanding the travel trade and welcoming the German and Australian visitor.
Gateway to the North
Working alongside Marketing Manchester, we are aiming to increase the volume of visitors coming through Manchester Airport by creating itineraries that open up the North of England to the American market. The Cumbria Tourism team is developing one and two-day excursions to spearhead the county as an unmissable rural destination.