World-class events hosted in Leeds have brought a huge boost to the city’s economy, a new report has found, with millions of tourists flocking to the area.
Visitor figures for 2015 are up 5.3 per cent since 2013, a survey has found, with 26 million tourist visits to the city recorded.
This success has been put down to the hosting of huge events like the Rugby and Rugby League World Cups, the Tour de France, the MOBOs, British Art Show and the BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
“We know Leeds is a welcoming city, but these figures show the wider appeal to visitors,” said councillor Judith Blake, leader of Leeds City Council.
“We have built up a fantastic reputation for hosting world-class events that people come from far and wide to enjoy.
“Tourism like this has a significant impact on the Leeds economy, helping to create and sustain jobs for people who live here.
“We hope to really build on this with the bid for the European Capital of Culture in 2023, to ensure the city remains one of the most sought after visitor destinations in the UK.”
The new figures from the STEAM survey, released by ConferenceLeeds and VisitLeeds, show the visitor economy sector is growing at an impressive rate with day visitors up by 4.7 per cent and overnight stays increasing by 12.5 per cent. As well as playing host to these major events, the groups say, the area’s wealth of museums and galleries amplify Leeds’ strong heritage and history, while as a shopping destination it is ranked as fifth in the UK.
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Jennifer Young, head of ConferenceLeeds, said the figures demonstrate the city is going from strength to strength with millions of tourists flocking to the area.
She added: “This year’s results are a true testament to the ongoing collaboration of city stakeholders that takes place throughout the city.
“We’re excited to see Leeds go from strength to strength.”
The latest figures reveal Leeds has been ranked as fifth in the UK as a shopping destination.