Norwich people among the most welcoming in the UK
Mary HamiltonNorwich people are among the most welcoming in the country thanks to their politeness and willingness to help people out, according to new figures.Research puts the city second only to Southampton when it comes to making visitors and strangers feel at home, and reveals that more than 90pc of people in Norwich would stop to help out tourists in the city.Support Norwich on FacebookMary Hamilton
Norwich people are among the most welcoming in the country thanks to their politeness and willingness to help people out, according to new figures.
Research puts the city second only to Southampton when it comes to making visitors and strangers feel at home, and reveals that more than 90pc of people in Norwich would stop to help out tourists in the city.
The figures, from a national survey by Jurys Inn to mark the start of British Tourism Week, show that more than 80pc of the city will hold doors open for shopping strangers, or help people with pushchairs to get up or down stairs.
More than two thirds of us smile and greet passers by while walking, and more than 97pc always thank people who help us out.
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Council officers believe that Norwich's good-natured people could help snag the City of Culture title, hoping that visitors would be more keen to come to such a welcoming place.
Norwich City Council cultural services officer Marion Catlin said: 'Norwich is a city with a long history of welcoming strangers, and nowadays people who live here value their quality of life.
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'They are proud of their city and I guess that is what makes it a welcoming place and a very strong contender to be the first City of Culture in 2013.'
Norwich was shortlisted for the City of Culture award alongside Birmingham, Sheffield and Derry/Londonderry.
Of the four cities, Norwich was the only one to make the list of welcoming cities, and Birmingham was rated the fourth most unwelcoming.
A spokesman from Visit Norwich said: 'It is not surprising that Norwich has come out second on the list of the UK's most welcoming cities, which comes hot on the heels of Norwich being short-listed for the UK capital of Culture 2013.
'Visitors are assured of a warm welcome in Norwich. This down to earth city prides itself on providing great customer service as businesses within Norwich recognise the importance of the visitor economy and the economic benefits it brings.
'If we are going to continue to compete with other leading UK cities we mustn't rest on our laurels but strive to offer outstanding personal service whilst offering great value for money.'
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Read more about the City of Culture bid at www.en24.co.uk/culture.
2013 reasons for Norwich to win
Can the people of Norwich come up with 2013 reasons why we should win? Here are some suggestions you came up with on Facebook.
'Norwich Market. It boasts over 190 stalls and is the largest Monday-to-Saturday open market in the country.
'There's been a market in Norwich since Saxon times and it's been on its current site longer than any of the buildings that surround it.' - Jenny James
'Because we have Europe's biggest permanent digital screen at The Forum.' - Richard Fair
'Brancaster Mussels, Yarmouth Bloaters and some of the best smoked kippers in the world - and I'm a Northumbrian raised on Craster kippers. That's saying a lot!' - Adrienne Jolly
'3,000 people came to show their support for the LGBT community on the first Norwich Pride in July 2009.' - Shelly Telly
Join the discussion at www.tinyurl.com/2013-reasons.