25th June 2012
I recently met with the Managing Director of South West Lakes Trust at Roadford Lake in West Devon. The Trust manages over 50 inland lakes and reservoirs and was awarded the Queen’s Medal for sustainable Tourism. Our meeting focused on the need to invest in the British Tourist Industry by building on the good work already being done at sites like Roadford Lake.
Tourism is extremely important to the UK economy; it contributes £96.7bn in England alone. It is also the UK’s third highest export earner behind Chemicals and Financial Services, showing its growing importance in today’s economy. The industry is particularly prominent and vibrant in the South West, as Cornwall is judged by Britons to be the most popular location for ‘staycations’.
At this point in time, it is imperative that we support the tourism industry as the rest of the economy stutters. The growth rate of the tourist economy is forecast to be 3.5% per annum until 2020. We must seize on this potential by nurturing and encouraging our tourist industry at this difficult financial time.