Date: 12 September 2017

Reference Number: 1407

Cheshire West Welcomes 35 Million Visitors

The latest tourism figures for Cheshire West and Chester has estimated the value of the visitor economy at £1.937 billion. Across Cheshire and Warrington the value of the visitor economy is estimated at £3.376 billion.

The annual STEAM report, an independent analysis of the Cheshire and Warrington economy (2016) highlights total visitor numbers are up 7.7 per cent to 62.18 million and employment in the visitor sector up by 6.1 per cent at an estimated 42,615.

Councillor Brian Clarke, Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Infrastructure said: “I welcome this good news, the report has revealed the visitor economy in Cheshire West and Chester grew at a remarkable rate of 10.5 per cent in 2016, probably one of the fastest in England.

“It just goes to show that we are definitely now a place of destination with over 35 million visits thanks to all of our attractions. Most are day visits but there has still been a 6.1per cent growth in hotel stays.

“The Council and our partners continue to develop attractions and itineraries that appeal and attract audiences to enjoy all that our area has to offer.”

Major attractions bringing visitors to West Cheshire include Chester Zoo, Cheshire Oaks, the Ice Cream Farm, Chester Races, Chester Cathedral, Anderton Boat Lift, Lion Salt Works and Chester itself.

Katrina Michel CEO Marketing Cheshire said: “This has been a stunning performance in Cheshire West and Chester. Chester and its environs is now a significant destination with world class attractions and a hotel and dining scene to match. Further afield Bolesworth and Carfest go from strength the strength. I can’t wait to see next year’s figures which will include Storyhouse, the Pokémon event and Chester castle.”

The figures are supported by the latest footfall figures for Chester. Data produced by Springboard show monthly footfall in Chester has risen by 11.7 per cent (compared to last year). This represents a huge increase compared to the average UK fall in footfall of 0.5 per cent.