2015 to mark tourism revival, says VisitEngland

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According to VisitEngland, 2015 is to kick-start a bumper decade with events such as the Rugby World Cup helping to generate over a half a million new jobs within the tourism market.

The country’s national tourist board predicts that an exceptionally high number of anniversaries and events set to take place this year will boost the tourism industry.

“England’s tourism industry can look forward to 2015 with confidence,” said James Berresford, chief executive of VisitEngland.

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“There is a cornucopia of stunning events and anniversaries falling this year which we’d expect to drive up visitor numbers right across the country. All this with a tailwind of growing consumer confidence and a falling oil price which cuts the cost of leisure travel, makes us optimistic for a busy year of welcoming more visitors from home and abroad,” he added.

This September, one of the biggest tourism events is set to be the Rugby World Cup with six weeks of games across ten cities expected to contribute almost £1 billion to the economy.

Other notable occasions taking place this year include the eight hundredth anniversary of magna carta, the fiftieth anniversary of Sir Winston Churchill’s death, the bicentenary of the battle of Waterloo and one hundred and fifty years since the publication of Alice in Wonderland.

Also planned will be the one hundred and twenty fifth anniversary of Agatha Christie’s birth and the opening of Wayne Hemingway’s Dreamland in Margate, a recreation of the world’s first amusement park.

Tourism has seen a significant increase during the recession, with Brits spending their holiday at home increasing by 24 per cent between 2008 and 2013. During the same period, overseas visitor spend grew by 29 per cent.

Helen Grant, Minister for Tourism, welcomed the predictions for 2015 saying: “The continued success of UK tourism is fantastic news, driving growth and supporting 2.6 million jobs in England alone.

“Our tourism strategy is working and is a vital part of the government’s long term economic plan. We are committed to keeping up this momentum and doing all we can to help an industry that is predicted to double in size over the next decade."

The growth predicted will be due to British people choosing to take more trips and holidays at home, with domestic tourism continuing to account for over 70 per cent of all spending.

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