Tourism chiefs state ‘Grand Depart boost is to continue’ as figures show prolonged economic impact

Tour cyclists climb Grinton Moor during stage one of the Grand Depart 2014. Picture by Shaun Flannery/ SWpix.com.
Tour cyclists climb Grinton Moor during stage one of the Grand Depart 2014. Picture by Shaun Flannery/ SWpix.com.
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Tourism leaders believe that the economic impact of the Tour de France Grand Depart will be felt in the county for years to come.

Ahead of the Great Yorkshire Show this week, Yorkshire figures have spoken of their confidence of Le Tour’s impact after the latest Visit England statistics showed the overall visitor spend in the White Rose has almost doubled in 12 months.

When comparing the period from January to March 2014 to the same quarter of this year the amount that visitors to Yorkshire spent increased by 45 per cent to £380million.

The number of visitors to Yorkshire hit 2.3m – a 23 per cent increase on the first quarter of 2014 – and the number of nights spent in the county by visitors reached 5.3m.

Sir Gary Verity, chief executive of tourism agency and Tour bid winners Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “We are absolutely delighted to see that the county and its businesses are reaping the rewards of Yorkshire’s Grand Depart. We knew that once we showcased Yorkshire to the world, we would inspire potential visitors to come and see this beautiful county for themselves. These fantastic statistics show just that.”

The statistics, from Visit England’s Great Britain Tourism Survey, are said to be more “robust” at a national level and show trips to England increased 22 per cent to 19.6m last year.

Meanwhile rental company holidaycottages.co.uk has seen a 120 per cent increase in Yorkshire bookings in July 2015 compared to July 2014. Managing director James Morris said: “The boom in the area has a lot to thank the Grand Depart for; for showing the world what a stunning place Yorkshire is.”

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