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Tourism creates 1,281 new jobs in North Norfolk in four years

PUBLISHED: 17:11 26 September 2016 | UPDATED: 17:11 26 September 2016

Cromer Beach. Picture by Pamela Culley

Cromer Beach. Picture by Pamela Culley

North Norfolk’s popularity as a tourist destination is booming with day trippers and people enjoying ‘staycations’ boosting the region’s economy. That’s the verdict from the latest tourism report.

Visitors enjoy the surf at Sea Palling. ALLY McGILVRAYVisitors enjoy the surf at Sea Palling. ALLY McGILVRAY

The Destination Research report on the Economic Impact of Tourism for 2015 released this month shows that in north Norfolk more than 10,000 people are employed in tourism related roles - both full-time and part-time - and that tourism is worth more than £484m to the area annually.

That figure has been growing year on year according to previous annual reports, from £415m in 2012, £434m in 2013 and £470m in 2014. This equates to more than a 16 per cent increase across four years. During that same time period, the number of full time equivalent jobs in the sector has increased from 6,550 to 7,831, a rise of nearly 20%.

With more people visiting the area the sector supports local shops, pubs, cafes and transport services, bringing income to suppliers and producers and fuelling the wider north Norfolk economy.

The report highlights that in 2015 there were 7,950,700 trips to North Norfolk with 7,392,000 day trips and 558,700 staying trips (2,383,000 staying nights).

Cromer from the Pier. Picture: NNDCCromer from the Pier. Picture: NNDC

The report estimates that the value of overnight trips is more than £139m with day trippers spending more than £259m.

Welcoming the report, Councillor Tom FitzPatrick, Leader of North Norfolk District Council, said: “North Norfolk is a stunning area and personally I believe it’s simply the best part of England.

“We’ve got spectacular beaches, areas of outstanding natural beauty both coastal and inland, and some absolutely fantastic towns and villages for people to enjoy. We recognise the importance of tourism to the district’s economy and it is essential to ensure north Norfolk continues to attract people and welcome them back time and time again.”

North Norfolk boasts four Blue Flag beaches at Cromer, Mundesley, Sea Palling and Sheringham, as well as two Seaside Award beaches at East Runton and Wells.

A sun-worshipper enjoys the Blue Flag beach at Sea Palling. Picture: ALLY McGILVRAYA sun-worshipper enjoys the Blue Flag beach at Sea Palling. Picture: ALLY McGILVRAY

The council also pointed to its investment in local authority owned attractions such as Cromer Pier and Holt Country Park, the latter boasting one of three Green Flags across the district.

It also highlighted its public toilets and 27 car parks - 17 at beach or visitor attractions - made the area more accessible.

Councillor Nigel Dixon, North Norfolk District Council’s Cabinet member for Economic Development and Tourism, said: “Anecdotally lots of people tell me – and I have seen it myself – that our towns and villages are attracting more and more visitors. These statistics back that up and help measure that growth in black and white.

“I’m not surprised that more and more people are waking up to the beauty of our district and deciding to spend their holiday time on our doorstep. North Norfolk is quite simply delightful and inspirational.”

North Norfolk boasts four Blue Flag beaches at Cromer, Mundesley, Sea Palling and Sheringham, as well as two Seaside Award beaches at East Runton and Wells. Picture: ALLY McGILVRAYNorth Norfolk boasts four Blue Flag beaches at Cromer, Mundesley, Sea Palling and Sheringham, as well as two Seaside Award beaches at East Runton and Wells. Picture: ALLY McGILVRAY

Earlier this year, a Nip To North Norfolk campaign was launched in a bid to attract more people to the area to enjoy all the pleasures of the coast – including how to build a sandcastle, how to catch a crab and how to spot clouds.

And there is a chance for tourism businesses to learn more about the future of north Norfolk tourism on September 28 at a Visit North Norfolk member networking event.

Potential new members are welcome at the event on Wednesday, September 28, from 5pm to 7pm, at Woodland Holiday Park, Trimingham.

Speakers will be Councillor Nigel Dixon, North Norfolk District Council’s Cabinet member for Economic Development and Tourism; Andrew Hird, Chairman of Visit North Norfolk; Kayla Dunne, Brand Manager of Visit North Norfolk; and Pete Waters, Executive Director of Visit East Anglia.

The event will explain how tourism promotion works in north Norfolk, discuss marketing, give details of membership benefits and provide an opportunity to network with other tourism businesses.

Kayla Dunne, Brand Manager of Visit North Norfolk, said: “Our marketing campaign this year, Nip to North Norfolk, focused on how to enjoy the unique attributes of the north Norfolk coast and countryside, such as big skies, beaches and the Broads National Park, through a series of ‘how to’ films and carries on throughout the winter and spring months, encouraging people to visit the area.”

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