By Scott Francis
A WEAKER pound, the legacy of hosting international cycling competitions and a string of hit TV shows filmed in Yorkshire have resulted in a record number of visitors to the county.
Yorkshire had 360,000 visitors between the months April and June, a 10 per cent increase and the highest quarter since records began in 1961 – and it provided a £145 million boost to the Yorkshire economy.
A spokesperson for Welcome to Yorkshire said: “Thanks to the Tour de France, Tour de Yorkshire, and the news that we will host the 2019 UCI Road World Championships, Yorkshire’s profile has never been so high.
“In 2014, the Grand Depart was beamed to billions of global TV viewers while the 2016 Tour de Yorkshire was broadcast in 178 countries and watched by 11.4 million people across Eurosport and ITV.
“Yorkshire is very much on the must-visit list for many people around the world and this will only increase in the run up to, and during the World Championships in 2019.
“Television shows filmed in Yorkshire, like The Yorkshire Vet and Victoria, have also played their part in increasing the county’s profile.”
Businesses in Yorkshire agree visitor figures are up. Jason Richards, 54, from Yorkshire Trike Tours in Horsforth said: “This has been our busiest year for the number of tours.
“As a holiday destination you can find everything in Yorkshire – the atmosphere is addictive and brings people to visit and revisit.
“We do guided tours and travelling throughout Yorkshire and I have definitely seen an increase in tourists in National Parks as well.”
And Belinda Eldridge, 43, director of development and commerce for Yorkshire Sculpture Park in Wakefield said: “Yorkshire as a brand is growing stronger and we are going from strength to strength.
“Year on year there has been an increase in tourist visitors, and 10 per cent of our 700,000 visitors are from overseas.
“Yorkshire Sculpture Park provides £10 million a year to the local economy so visitor spend is vital.”
The spokesperson for Welcome to Yorkshire added: “Yorkshire has so much to offer. It is home to three national parks, more Michelin starred restaurants than anywhere outside of London, award-winning family attractions like The World of James Heriot and Eureka! in Halifax.
“It also has some of Europe’s best shopping destinations, a spectacular coastline, a rich and fascinating history, and fantastic food and drink.”
10 interesting facts you may not know about Yorkshire
Yorkshire is a popular destination for tourists from far and wide and it is easy to see why when you examine these 10 interesting facts about the White Rose County.
- Yorkshire is home to the highest pub in Britain-The Tan Hill Inn in North Yorkshire stands at 1,732 feet above seas level, with a rich history of ale it is no surprise the county has the pub which is situated closest to the heavens.
- Sheffield has the most trees to people ratio than anywhere in Europe, although this may not be the case soon as Sheffield council insists on cutting down many trees in the future despite protests.
- The tallest British man ever was a Yorkshireman, William Bradley was 7 foot 9 inches and was known as ‘The Yorkshire Giant.’ A statue now stands in East Yorkshire where Bradley is a folk legend.
- The County has its own anthem called, “On Iikla Moor Baht ‘at.” The song tells of a love story taking place on Iikley Moor.
- The world’s first football club came from Yorkshire, Sheffield FC was formed in 1857 by William Prest and Nathaniel Creswick.
- In the 2012 London Olympics if Yorkshire athletes competed separately from Team GB they would have finished 12th in the medal table with 7 golds, 2 slivers and 3 bronze medals.
- Guy Fawkes, one of the conspirators to blow up the Houses of Parliament with gun power and whose actions gave us Bonfire night is from Yorkshire.
- Yorkshire is the largest county in the UK.
- The first seaside resort in the UK was Scarborough and has been a popular destination for tourists for over 360 years.
- There are more than 1000 species of moths in The Yorkshire Dales National Park.