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Numbers up at Nottinghamshire attractions

Family playing frisbee and enjoying the gardens at Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire.

Visitor numbers to attractions in Nottinghamshire are increasing year on year, according to numbers released by VisitEngland in the Annual Attractions Survey for 2014.

Visits to attractions across the East Midlands region were up 3% year on year compared to 2013, with a number of Nottinghamshire’s attractions reporting impressive growth. The Annual Attractions Survey records visits to attractions across England in each calendar year, and is used as a benchmark for the popularity of England’s visitor attractions.

The increase follows national marketing campaigns by Experience Nottinghamshire, alongside proactive work by visitor attractions, to raise the profile of Nottinghamshire as a destination for visitors from around the country. These campaigns have also led to steady growth in the volume and value of tourism for the city and county.

Jennifer Spencer, chief executive at Experience Nottinghamshire, said:

“This is a very positive result for Nottinghamshire attractions across both the city and the county. The success of these attractions is part of an overall success story for Nottinghamshire’s visitor economy, as tourism numbers and value continue to grow year on year. The survey is also a great reminder of the diverse array we have for visitors to Nottinghamshire, all of which help encourage overnight stays, contributing to the local visitor economy which was worth £1.56bn in 2013*.”

In Nottinghamshire, numbers at attractions were overwhelmingly on the up, with highlights including:

  • 50% increase in numbers at Holme Pierrepont Hall
  • 26.7% increase in numbers at Wollaton Hall & Deer Park
  • 18.8% increase in numbers at Framework Knitters Museum
  • 17.7% increase at DH Lawrence Heritage Centre
  • 8.8% increase in numbers at Nottingham Castle
  • 8.3% increase in numbers at Newstead Abbey
  • 7.5% increase in numbers at Sherwood Forest Country Park
  • 5.5% increase in numbers at Clumber Park
  • 3.9% increase at Rufford Abbey Country Park

Numbers at all of Nottingham City Council’s major attractions increased significantly from 2013 to 2014, reflecting the Council’s commitment to improving the visitor experience at all attractions through things like new events and special offers.

Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture, said:

“I’m pleased to see that visitor numbers are increasing year on year at Wollaton Hall, Newstead Abbey and Nottingham Castle. This has a positive impact on the local visitor economy.  The programme of events at our heritage sites is bigger and better than ever, and the new children’s playground which opened at Wollaton Park last year also helps to attract more people to visit. I’d like to thank colleagues and volunteers at our heritage sites who work hard to give visitors the best possible experience.”

National Trust property Clumber Park in North Nottinghamshire was the most popular paid attraction in the entire East Midlands, with 709,000 visitors in 2014, up from 672,000 in 2013.

Jacqueline Mooney, Operations Manager at Clumber Park commented:

“We are delighted to be recognised as the most popular paid visitor attraction in the East Midlands.  This is recognition for the hard work and dedication of our team here at Clumber Park who keep our 3,800 acre site open and accessible to visitors all year round. This shows the value of outdoor attractions across Nottinghamshire both to communities and the economy.”

Nottinghamshire County Council’s major country parks also saw great results, with growth at both Rufford Abbey and Sherwood Forest Country Park.

Councillor John Knight, Culture Committee Chairman at Nottinghamshire County Council said:

“Rufford Abbey Country Park and Sherwood Forest Country Park are two of the county’s top tourist destinations which are free to visit and we are delighted with these latest results. Both country parks are popular with visitors at home and abroad throughout the year and there is always something for everyone with busy events programmes at both Rufford and Sherwood.

“We welcomed 40,000 visitors at the 31st Robin Hood Festival between August 3 and 9 at Sherwood Forest. Other forthcoming events include the Major Oak Woodland Festival in partnership with The Sherwood Forest Trust at Sherwood Forest on September 12 and 13 and On the Home Front – 1940s Living History Weekend at Rufford Abbey on September 26 and 27.”

Looking at the top 20 lists for the East Midlands, four of the five top free attractions in the region are in Nottinghamshire – Rufford Abbey Country Park, Sherwood Forest Country Park, Wollaton Hall & Deer Park and Attenborough Nature Centre. The county’s top paid for attractions include Clumber Park, Nottingham Castle, Newstead Abbey and the Galleries of Justice Museum.

Full details of the VisitEngland Annual Attractions Survey 2014 can be found at: https://www.visitengland.com/biz/resources/insights-and-statistics/research-topics/attractions-research/annual-survey-visits-visitor-attractions

Erin Huckle, PR Manager, Experience Nottinghamshire, erin.huckle@experiencenottinghamshire.com / 0115 962 8304 / 07411 355 293


Posted on 18 August 2015

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