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2015 Coastal Tourism

2015 Coastal Tourism
Photo copyright Rik Wright

Coastal tourism is often perceived as an industry in decline, yet a recent report by National Coastal Tourism Academy challenges this perception. This paper seeks to bridge gaps in understanding and present the state of tourism on the coast of England as well as the opportunities for growth, and priorities for development and support.

Now in its second phase, and funded by the Coastal Communities Fund, the Academy is working with a number of coastal resorts nationally. While each coastal resort is unique, there are challenges and opportunities relevant to all as shown in the following report summary:

Tourism in England is seeing a period of growth that should be replicated at a local level in coastal communities, yet in reality many destinations are in need of support in order to achieve growth in line with national averages. The private sector, in destinations where a framework for collaboration was already in place, has increased its financial contribution to destination management but this has largely been focused on short-term marketing activity. Coastal tourism is very different to urban because of the high numbers of SMEs and increased pressure on public resources. As a result, there is a clear need to focus on:

  •  Business support and training for SMEs and independent tourism businesses.
  • Research and development to attract new markets, ensure suitable product market fit and delivery of quality visitor experiences in line with changing consumer needs.
  • Support to create collaborative partnerships within destinations and a clear vision for the destination, where they are not already in place.
  • Continued public sector funding in tourism provision in coastal towns
  • Provision at local and national level to measure performance, share best practice and deliver sustainable growth for the benefit of the all destinations. This must be backed up by a more coordinated approach to funding of coastal development from central government.
  • Continuing to build understanding of coastal tourism and key growth areas.
  • Changing the perceptions of non-visitors, the media and government to reduce the gap between the perceptions and reality of the coastal tourism offer and its importance to the UK economy.

Follow this link to download the full report on 2015 Coastal Tourism

Follow this link to read about Coastal Tourism in the United Kingdom

Follow this link to the website for the National Coastal Tourism Academy

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