Hadrian's Wall
Hadrian's Wall, Sycamore Gap.
Rebecca Wayman

Northumberland celebrates footfall of over 10 million during 2017

The annual regional report on the economic impact of tourism has been released, revealing that Northumberland welcomed 10.3 million visitors during 2017, a six per cent increase on 2016.

The research conducted by NewcastleGateshead initiative shows that the visitor economy in Northumberland is continuing to grow year on year.

The report has also revealed that the amount spent by visitors is up six per cent on 2016 at £924.84m.

Jude Leitch, director at Northumberland Tourism, said: “Given that tourism is so important to Northumberland, supporting nearly 15,000 jobs, this growth is very good news.

“Confidence amongst our businesses is high and we are seeing a lot of private investment in new attractions, accommodation and restaurants.

“Our ongoing challenge is to ensure that this level of growth is managed sustainably, so as to protect our beautiful landscapes and our way of life. We are working closely with Northumberland County Council towards this aim.”

Figures were also released around the food and drink industry in Northumberland, stating that the sector now accounts for 36 per cent of all visitor expenditure and 31 per cent of all employment.

Cath Homer, Northumberland County Council’s portfolio holder for culture, arts, leisure and tourism, added: “Tourism is a major economic driver in our county employing thousands of people, and I’m absolutely delighted to see continued growth in our figures year on year.

“This growth is testament to the hard work and sterling efforts of all our tourist attractions, hotels, restaurants and shops, who have all contributed to these positive results.

“However, there is more we can do to improve our tourism offer to keep it fresh and dynamic. We plan to build on our credentials as a destination of choice, and really start to punch above our weight.

“To do this we need diversify our offer to make sure it’s what people want, and importantly, come back time and time again.”

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