The Dales Country House Hotel
The latest set of figures detailing how important the tourism sector is to North Norfolk has painted a clear picture of many more overnight stays and a £10m boost to the economy year on year.
The Economic Impact of Tourism report for 2017, published this week, has revealed the following:
• The total number of trips (day & staying) to North Norfolk was 8,827,700.
• Of these, 8,207,000 were day trips (up 5.8% from a 2016 total of 7,755,000).
• And 620,700 were 'staying' or overnight trips (up 12.1% from a 2016 total of 553,500).
• This gives a total tourism value of £505m (up 3% from a 2016 total of £495m).
• In 2017 there were 11,352 actual tourism jobs (or 8,184 full time equivalent jobs). This is an increase of 3% compared to 2016.
The 2017 figures also compare well with overall growth in England - the 12.1% increase in the number of overnight trips to North Norfolk is against a background of a 3% increase in the same statistic across England as a whole.
The new statistics come as North Norfolk District Council continues to pursue and support projects backing the tourism industry, perhaps most notably the Deep History Coast and Visit North Norfolk's promotional video campaigns.
On top of this, there have been anecdotal reports of bumper figures during 2018 to date, as a reflection of the long hot summer.
Cllr Nigel Dixon, Conservative Cabinet Member for Economic Development, Business and Tourism at North Norfolk District Council, said, 'It's really pleasing to see such a strong set of tourist sector activity indicators, especially the rise in overnight stays, it follows a very positive year on year trend.
'It shows that North Norfolk District Council, working in partnership with Visit North Norfolk and others, and investing in maintaining, improving and expanding tourist facilities, is paying dividends in supporting a key economic sector for North Norfolk.'
Cllr Virgina Gay, Liberal Democrat Shadow Portfolio Holder for Tourism at North Norfolk District Council, said, 'Excellent news. We've beaten the average increase in overnight trips across England by a very nice margin. This is what so many people have worked for.'
Cllr John Rest, Leader of the Independent Group at North Norfolk District Council, said, 'This is a very positive message to show that North Norfolk is one of the best tourist areas to visit.
'We are striving to increase our facilities for visitors to enjoy and encourage them to stay longer and increasing our all year round trade, which will offer greater employment opportunities in the District.'
Kayla Dunne, Brand Manager at Visit North Norfolk, said: 'We are greatly encouraged by the latest report. The fact that the increase in overnight trips is four times the growth compared to England as a whole reflects North Norfolk's unique visitor offering such as Blue Flag beaches, nature and a wide choice of places to stay and things to do.
'The trend of holidaying at home, enjoyment of natural beauty as well as authentic experiences, has increasingly attracted people to North Norfolk all year-round and our latest marketing campaign, North Norfolk, Naturally, aims to extend the main visitor season while providing a 'shop front' for visitors to plan their stay in North Norfolk.'
(source: North Norfolk District Council)