Revealed: Six-point plan to save Yorkshire’s tourism industry

Photograph: Tim Green on Wikipedia
19 Jun 2020 @ 7.37 am
| Business

Yorkshire’s tourism body has revealed its strategy to save the county’s £9 billion visitor industry, which has been crippled by the coronavirus pandemic.

Welcome To Yorkshire today (Friday, 19 June) unveiled a report to Reopen, Recover and Rebuild the tourism sector – which would ‘stand up for thousands of businesses and retain a vital part of the region’s identity now and for the foreseeable future’.

The recovery plan focuses on these key campaigns to support economic growth:

  1. A revised business membership with an entry level service offering free support and resources for anyone to sign up to.
  2. The launch of a Yorkshire Gift Card to encourage spend within the county. 
  3. A focused regional support service for North, South, East and West Yorkshire. 
  4. A nationwide marketing campaign to welcome visitors back to Yorkshire. 
  5. The launch of a personal membership model to tap in to the millions of Yorkshire connections worldwide.
  6. A recovery task group will be formed to ensure delivery of the recovery plan.

Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive James Mason said: “We are all very passionate about our county that has suffered the effects of flooding in recent years and now this life-changing virus.

“Our recovery document has been created with short-term, midterm and long-term objectives to reflect the ever-changing times we are experiencing.”

Promote staycations

Visitors on York walls. Photograph © Allan Harris on Flickr

Welcome To Yorkshire plans to work together with businesses, tourist trade associations and councils to implement its plans, with the hashtag #YorkshireTogether.

It plans to help protect Yorkshire’s 225,000 tourism jobs by maximising the staycation market, to ensure the county “achieves market share through
the growth in domestic holidays in the UK”.

Campaigns will aim to “inspire returning and first-time visitors, local and regional to visit Yorkshire for day trips, long weekends and eventually extended holidays by promoting Yorkshire in the right way, with the right insights at the right time to the right audiences”.

In the first instance they will promote “relevant product including rural outdoor space and the coast”, rather than cities like York.

The strategy will:

  • Promote Yorkshire as a trusted visitor destination through social platforms, digital campaigns and integrated media
  • launch a Song for Yorkshire project to ‘help celebrate the civic pride in our county’
  • Instil confidence and trust in businessesto reopen by helping them prepare to be Covid secure.

Welcome to Yorkshire chair Peter Box said: “I am confident that our recovery plan will be a hugely important step forward in rebuilding a successful visitor experience, attracting tourists back to the county and playing its part in helping Yorkshire’s economy recover.”

You can read the full report here.