Blackpool is reporting its best ever visitor numbers for an autumn season since 2009, recording four million adult visits to the seaside resort between September and December 2013.
The Omnibus survey results represent an increase of 250,000 visits over the same period in 2012, making it the highest four-monthly total since the surveys began in 2009.
The autumn period is traditionally a busy period for Blackpool with the Illuminations attracting visitors nightly along with the World Firework Championships, which took place over four Fridays in September.
Adult visits for the year as a whole have risen to 10m and the ratio of staying visitors versus day visitors showed an increase between September and December: with 42 per cent staying for at least one night compared to 36 per cent in 2012.
Councillor Graham Cain, Blackpool Council Cabinet Member for Tourism and Leisure, tells CN: “These figures do represent both leisure and business visitors so it is pleasing to report these numbers.
“Of course, Blackpool is synonymous with holidays and continues to be the UK’s most popular seaside resort for leisure visitors.
“However, we are very serious about business and are working to attract new groups and associations all the time. Just a few weeks ago we welcomed more than 20,000 pigeon fanciers for a three-day weekend and this week we are hosting the UK inbound annual conference.
“The only way of continuing to bring in such high visitor numbers is to have high quality attractions and great business facilities here to draw in visitors.
“The 2013 autumn season benefited from an additional week of Illuminations at the start of November and also from extensive positive TV coverage generated by Blackpool hosting a heat of the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing.
“An increase in overnight stays is also pleasing. The Blackpool Resort Pass was launched last year to encourage visitors to stay longer in the resort and it has already been reported that 67 per cent of those surveyed who bought the Pass did stay for four nights or longer.”
Overall visitor satisfaction ratings for the four-month period in 2013 stood at 88 per cent compared to 84 per cent in 2012, according to the Omnibus survey of 4,000 visitors.
Photo credit: David Graham.
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