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promoting Cumbria at Heathrow

promoting Cumbria at Heathrow

The images of flooding before and after Christmas in Cumbria, Lancashire, Yorkshire and Scotland is something not easily forgotten. Who will forget the images of the bridge in Tadcaster collapsing into the river below? Not a month before I had travelled in a bus over that same bridge.

And that is a problem. Memory. We remember those scenes and that of people saying that it will be months before they can move in again.

Yet the flooding didn’t affect all of these areas. Most places were largely unaffected but because of those images – like that of Somerset a year before – many think that we shouldn’t holiday or travel there.

To show that view is inaccurate, two tourism initiatives have been launched this week.

...and Yorkshire

…and Yorkshire

Firstly, Visit England and Virgin Trains have joined in a campaign whereby Virgin Trains is offering an exclusive discount of 30% off advance fares to parts of Cumbria, Yorkshire, Lancashire and Northumberland as part of a three-month promotion starting February 9. With the message, #Openforbusiness, it is hoped tourists will be encouraged to visit the area’s national parks, historical cities and cultural places of interest. The offer is timed to coincide with the February half-term holiday and March Easter break. Destination organisations along the east and west coast are also pulling together late availability offers and deals.

Using the same strapline, #Openforbusiness, and largely directed at overseas visitors, images of those areas have been unveiled across Heathrow’s terminals in a bid to promote some of the worst affected areas following recent floods. Heathrow has provided the equivalent of £500,000 of poster space for VisitBritain and Visit Scotland to encourage the airport’s passengers to visit the affected areas. The campaign images feature Hadrian’s Wall in Cumbria, Harewood House in Yorkshire, Williamson Park in Lancashire and Crathes Castle in Aberdeenshire.

Will it succeed with those media images still strong in our minds? All concerned are hoping it will and half-term holidays in a few weeks’ time will confirm whether are returning to those areas.

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