Culture Secretary urges tourist industry to make the most of London 2012
A dozen of the country’s top holiday brands - including Bourne Leisure, Superbreaks and Hoseasons - have signed up to a new 20.12 per cent discount scheme, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt announced today.
Speaking to tourism leaders on the day that details of next year’s Olympic Torch Relay were announced, Mr Hunt urged tourism businesses around the country to make the most of the huge opportunity offered by hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Speaking at the World Travel Market, Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport Mr Hunt said:
“The 2012 Games give us a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase all that is GREAT about Britain. The Torch will travel the length and breadth of the country, from Land’s End to Lerwick, visiting some of our most striking landmarks. Communities everywhere will have the a chance to celebrate this momentous occasion, watching as the Olympic flame passes through their streets, carried by their own local heroes.
“We want to show all the wonderful things Britain has to offer to an international audience, but next year will be the perfect opportunity for more of us to holiday in the UK. With so much going on, and the fantastic 20.12% discount scheme, it’s a great opportunity to see what Britain has to offer.”
Mr Hunt also announced today that this week he will be taking a ‘regional roadshow’ around the country to promote the tourism, cultural and business opportunities of the 2012 Games. He will launch the roadshow in Cumbria on Wednesday.
Mr Hunt added:
“I’m really looking forward to taking the message about the benefits of the 2012 Olympics to all parts of the country. This is a Games for everyone, not just London, and it’s the perfect chance for communities everywhere to make the very most of it.”
The 20.12 per cent discount initiative will be launched next year by VisitEngland as part of a campaign to use the Games to boost domestic tourism. Under the scheme, holidaymakers booking a UK short break before the closing ceremony of the Paralympic Games will be eligible for a 20.12 per cent discount. VisitEngland’s campaign is supported by a £3 million investment from the Olympic budget and is expected to deliver 12,000 new jobs and £480 million in extra spend over three years.
Jeremy Hunt also confirmed today that the Government is to invest a further £39 million in the GREAT campaign to give a concerted push to promoting the UK as a great place to visit, study and work. Including some of this new money from the GREAT campaign, plus private sector support, VisitBritain will invest around £127 million in overseas promotion. Over four years it is expected to deliver 4.6 million extra visitors from overseas and £2.27 billion in extra visitor spend.
Notes to Editors
The GREAT initiative is an international campaign to maximise the tourism and business opportunities of the UK hosting the 2012 Games.
This week’s visit to Cumbria is the first of a series that Jeremy Hunt is making around the country to promote the opportunities of 2012. The full list of dates are:
* 9 November : North West (Cumbria) * 16 November: East Midlands (Nottingham) * 18 November: South West (Eden Project) * 23 November: West Midlands (Birmingham) * 1 December: East of England (Norwich) * 2 December: South East (Canterbury) * 16 December: North East (Gateshead) * 12 January: London * 18 January: Yorkshire & Humber (York) * 20 January: North West (Manchester) * Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales to be confirmed
- The first companies to sign up for the new 20.12 per cent discount scheme are:
* Cottages 4 You: Offering 9,000 cottages right across the UK * Superbreak: Specialising in short breaks such as theatre breaks and theme parks. * Bourne Leisure: 52 sites across the UK, including Haven Holidays, Warner Leisure Hotels and Butlins. * Hoseasons * The Eden Project * Coach Tourism Council
The extra £3 million investment in domestic tourism was announced by Jeremy Hunt in September.
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