Northumberland Tourism Businesses Support New Campaign
Northumberland County Council and Visit Northumberland have launched a new campaign starring local businesses from across the county and are urging entrepreneurs from the area to get onboard by accessing a new toolkit designed to support their business.
Aimed at welcoming people to the county while reminding them to act responsibly – ‘Love It Like It’s Yours’ features locals including Ally Thompson from Hexham’s Hjem restaurant, Patrick Norris from Belford’s Footsteps in Northumberland and Sally Urwin from Highhouse Farm, Matfen.
Commenting on his involvement, Patrick Norris, who runs the popular guided walking business, catering for walkers of all abilities, said, “My favourite part of Northumberland has to be the Pilgrims’ Way walk to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne. It is a very popular destination, however, the habitat is so fragile that every step you take matters and every action has a consequence. Take dogs for example, if your dog chases and barks at nesting birds, they are quite likely to abandon their nests meaning the eggs, chicks and fledglings will die.
“I wanted to support this campaign to help remind visitors to do their bit and leave no trace. We are due for an extremely busy holiday season since the majority of tourists will be staying in the UK. If businesses in our county pull together in support of the new campaign, it means that we can reap the benefits of visitors, whilst helping keep it unspoilt for generations to come.”
The campaign will feature on TV, radio and digital advertising and there is an accompanying toolkit for businesses with a range of downloadable marketing materials – all aimed at reminding visitors to respect this special place. These can be displayed at premises or sent digitally to remind customers how they can help leave the county unspoilt during their trip. The toolkit can be downloaded at the Visit Northumberland website: visitnorthumberland.com/business-toolkit.
Ally Thompson runs Hexham’s fine dining experience, Hjem, with partner and chef, Alex Nietosvuori, who also features. She continues, “We wanted to be involved because this is our home and we love it. We are very proud of the county and when people visit, they aren’t prepared for its beauty. But when they don’t treat it with the respect it deserves is quite upsetting to witness.
“The new campaign and toolkit for businesses make it really easy for the community to pull together and remind visitors to love it as we do, and the small steps they can take to preserve its stunning beauty.”
David Hall, chair of Visit Northumberland, added: “We are expecting record numbers of people to visit this year. Estimates that 30 million tourists will visit the coastline of the UK this summer are staggering, and we have some of the most unspoilt areas in the country and want to keep them that way.
“That’s why we’ve created this campaign, to remind visitors, but also to provide easily accessible and usable information for Northumberland businesses to share with their customers, that encourages them to keep this beautiful place just that.
“From downloading content that they can send to tourists ahead of time, to campaign materials they can display, to social media assets, the toolkit is easy to use and the collective impact will benefit us all.”
Councillor Jeff Watson, County Council Cabinet Member responsible for tourism, added; “This is a great example of partnership working, bringing organisations and people together to ensure everyone can have a safe and enjoyable summer in our fantastic county.”