Tourism Outlook is sunny for 2017 after strong 2016 season
With summer and half-term over, the run up to Christmas and the start of the 2017 season, it seems a good time to reflect on the Norfolk tourism industry in 2016 and beyond.
How did the season go?
As we make our way around Norfolk, talking with businesses, the feeling is after a slow start (thanks to an early Easter and poor weather) the long, warm summer that started after Whitsun has meant a drawn-out, steady season which lasted through to October.
The school holidays had a positive impact on family attractions (albeit some indoor attractions suffered because of the good weather) and this is a pattern we’re getting reported back from other regions.
At Take One, when we look at leaflet distribution and pickup trends we can quantify the anecdotal evidence and confirm what the market is saying. Leaflet pickup overall has been strong and replenishment was significantly higher in June/July compared to the previous year – things did improve after Whitsun.
It is well documented that the EU referendum, weakening of the pound and safety concerns over terror threats are likely to result in more UK residents holidaying at home and taking day trips – we have seen this in people accessing attraction information on our Dayvisits website.
In addition, more international visitors are expected, should the exchange rates continue to follow their current trajectories – pushing visitor numbers and spend up.
There are also some exciting Norfolk developments for 2017, keeping people coming back and locals out and about. The air show in Great Yarmouth for one is big news. With a solid and enticing tourism product and favourable economic conditions, 2017 should make for a good year.
Philippa Harris is managing director of Take One Media.