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Boost to Norwich tourism as figures show increase in day visitors

PUBLISHED: 09:36 18 February 2015 | UPDATED: 09:36 18 February 2015

View of Norwich Cathedral and the close from the rooftop of Larking Gowen. Photo: Steve Adams

View of Norwich Cathedral and the close from the rooftop of Larking Gowen. Photo: Steve Adams

New figures released by VisitNorwich have revealed a nearly 50pc increase in the number of day visits to Norwich - making it the sixth most visited city in England for day trips.

The city will be hosting a packed year of events - here are a selection:

•Homage to Manet - on loan exhibition which explores the influence of one of the French artist Edouard Manet, held at Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery until April 19

•UEA Literary Festivals - the Spring festival begins on Wednesday 25 February and runs until Wednesday 29 April and will feature seven writers

•Norwich Fashion Week - created in 2010 to celebrate fashion scene in the city, this year’s event will take place between March 5-12

•Norfolk and Norwich Festival - between May 4 and 24 the arts festival will host a number of events including an exhibition of work by influential American artist Jeff Koons

•Radio 1’s Big Weekend - between May 23 and 24 the UK’s biggest free ticketed festival will arrive in the city. Confirmed to make appearances so far are Taylor Swift and Florence and the Machine

•GoGoDragons! trail - the charity trail across Norwich will see 80 large dragon sculptures hit the streets on June 21

•The Royal Norfolk Show - the largest two-day agricultural show will take place between July 1 and 2

•Lord Mayor’s Celebration - the city’s biggest community celebration - four days of events including, a street procession, theatre, music and food markets. The event takes place on from July 3 to 6

The 2013 statistics which were compiled by Cool Tourism - a European partnership project which aim to improve and promote rural tourism - found that day visits to the city rose by 48pc from the 2012 figures, to 10.2 million.

It is estimated that tourism is worth around £643 million per year to the Norwich area and supports more than 11,224 jobs, with tourism throughout the county valued at £2.7 billion with 39.1 million visits and supporting an estimated 54,864 jobs.

In a bid to attract more tourists to the city VisitNorwich have unveiled a new visitors guide, ‘Norwich, Norfolk Broads and Countryside’, with 35,000 copies distributed to to Tourist Information Centres across the country.

“Norwich, Norfolk Broads and Countryside is our chance to promote what a fantastic city we have here,” said Nick Bond, head of tourism at VisitNorwich.

Sara Hardman (left), VisitNorwich marketing executive, and Dawn King, manager of Caley's Cocoa Café  launch the 2015 visitor guide in Caley’s at The Guildhall.Sara Hardman (left), VisitNorwich marketing executive, and Dawn King, manager of Caley's Cocoa Café launch the 2015 visitor guide in Caley’s at The Guildhall.

“Norwich is rich in culture and heritage and through this wide-reaching print campaign we can really shout about it and make sure it’s top of mind for people choosing their next destination, whether it’s for a day trip or their next holiday.”

A packed line up of events in Norwich including, Radio 1’s Big Weekend, GoGoDragons! trail, Norwich Fashion Week and Lord Mayor’s celebration, promises to help boost tourism in the city.

And David Master, chairman of Norwich Attractions, said the guide will help increase awareness of what the city has to offer.

He said: “Norwich, Norfolk Broads and Countryside is a very useful guide for visitors to Norwich. The wide range of attractions are highlighted together so visitors can quickly see the choice there is in Norwich, from the magnificent castle to a simple but unique Victorian Garden.

The top six most visited cities for day trips in England 2013/14 - information complied by VisitEngland

1) London

2) Manchester

3) Birmingham

4) Leeds

5) Liverpool

6) Norwich

“We look forward to welcoming a rush of visitors in coming months.”

For more information about VisitNorwich, visit www.visitnorwich.co.uk

Do you think the VisitNorwich guide will help to increase tourism? Email rebecca.murphy@archant.co.uk

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