Tourism on the agenda as first stage of ten-year plan goes ahead

Heatwave weather pics..'Heatwave sunshine brings the crowds back to the South Bay.'113987f. Pic Kevin Allen.'01/10/11.
Heatwave weather pics..'Heatwave sunshine brings the crowds back to the South Bay.'113987f. Pic Kevin Allen.'01/10/11.
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Council bosses have given the thumbs up to a 10-year plan which could help boost revenue to Scarborough’s economy by 60 per cent to £755 million each year.

The plan, the first of its kind for Scarborough. sets out ways in which the economy can build on a tourism industry which, at the last count, welcomes 6.5 million visitor days trips every year, sustains 15,520 jobs and brings in around £470 million annually.

Scarborough Castle.  (BR1002/09u) 7 February 2014.  Picture Bruce Rollinson

Scarborough Castle. (BR1002/09u) 7 February 2014. Picture Bruce Rollinson

Known as the Visitor Economy Strategy, the borough-wide plan outlines growth through public and private partnership working, by identifying priorities for action and investment and by improving quality in the face of increasing competition.

Cllr David Chance, the borough council’s cabinet member for tourism and culture, said in the introduction to the report: “Everyone must get behind this strategy to make it happen.

“The task will not be an easy one and inevitably there will be obstacles to overcome, as well as new opportunities to embrace.”

The 50-page plan, which went before cabinet on Tuesday, explains the importance of making the Scarborough coast a year-round destination, while emphasising the need to convert day-trippers to staying visitors.

It’s been co-written by former tourism chief Mike Wilkinson, who has relocated from Lancashire to Scarborough. and believes the region would not require huge new attractions - only to “polish some existing gems”.

He said: “The main focus will be promoting high-value short breaks and second holiday market segments based on the four winning themes - coast, countryside, culture and cuisine - to attract new visitors under the ‘Yorkshire Coast’ brand.”

The plan’s other author is Janet Deacon, from the tourism agency Welcome to Yorkshire. She said the focus of the plan was not purely on tourism, but on other sectors, including retail and industry, which can also attract visitors.

She said: “It’s about local businesses attracting visitors and those business people then become leisure people.”