Comment: Visitor numbers to Liverpool have grown since it was the European Capital of Culture but the city must not stand still... Chris Brown page 10

East lobbies for Stansted-China link By Samantha Mayling

An East of England-China Forum has been created to campaign for a direct air link between the region and China, and to boost tourism.

The forum includes Visit East

Anglia and Visit Essex, along with Stansted Airport representatives, business leaders and local politicians. Ken O’Toole, Stansted chief

executive, said: “In the next few years, China is expected to overtake the US to become the biggest aviation market in

Lake District launches its own currency

More than 200 locally-owned businesses in the Lake District have joined a new scheme to support tourism with a regional currency.

Called the Lake District Pound, it can be used alongside sterling, but can only be spent in locally- owned, independent businesses and tourist attractions. Each note features prominent

figures from Lake District history. Ken Royall, founder and director of the Lakes Currency Project, said: “We want the currency to create a fun experience which enables visitors and local people to explore the unique culture of the Lakes. “This will raise awareness of our

local businesses and drive footfall to them.” People can swap sterling for

Lake District pounds at exchange points across the region, including most Post Offices. An estimated 18 million people visit the Lake District each year.



‘WHEY AYE’ WHEEL PROJECT: Developers plan to build Europe’s tallest observation wheel on Newcastle Quayside in a project that would see more than £100 million invested in the city. Dubbed ‘The Whey Aye’, the observation wheel will be 140 metres high – five metres taller than the London Eye.

the world and together with a relaxation of visa and flight restrictions for Chinese visitors, now is the time for the region to come together to secure new direct links between our region and China. “It is crucial we build a strong coalition of businesses, universities, tourism agencies and local government to demonstrate the size of the opportunity to airlines.” Claire Ruskin, chief executive of

the Cambridge Network, added: “Nearly 5% of the population in Cambridge is Chinese and we have considerable activity between

A similar coalition has

With a relaxation of visa and flight restrictions, now is the time for our region to come together

businesses and institutions in this region and across China already. Direct links from Stansted will encourage even more productive relationships.”

Hoseasons adds fresh waterways options

Self-catering specialist Hoseasons has added new boating breaks for 2018, for holidaymakers to explore canals and lakes. One sets off from Devizes

Marina in Wiltshire along the Kennet and Avon Canals, heading to Bath, Bradford-on-Avon and Bristol, while the other offers the chance to explore Lower Lough

Erne in Northern Ireland.

◗ On the Water feature p24-25

already proved successful in Manchester, where a partnership between Manchester Airport, local government, tourism agencies, universities and the business community helped to secure direct links to Hong Kong and Beijing in 2014 and 2016 respectively. The Beijing route alone helped

exports from the north of England to China increase by 260% to £200 million per month while Chinese visitors to the north rose by more

than 50%.


w Royal wedding fever to spark tourism surge

More than 100,000 people visited Windsor for last month’s royal wedding, and the global TV audience was estimated to be almost two billion. Alexander Göransson, consultant at research firm Euromonitor, said: “The Royal family are a major driver of UK tourism, especially to sites associated with them. The ‘Meghan & Harry effect’ will be felt from 2019 onwards.”

w Go Travel agency buys

Chislehurst travel agency Go Travel has acquired established family-owned, which was put up for sale following the death of two directors. can

trace its history in Croydon back to 1948, and employs 10 people. Go Travel has branches in Petts Wood, Locksbottom, Sevenoaks and Blackheath,

and employs 28 staff.

June 2018 | TravelGBI 5

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