In a bid to restore Japanese visitor numbers to pre foot and mouth and 9/11 levels, Cheshire’s tourism industry has pioneered the development of a new Japanese language website.
The new site - www.cheshire.jp - has been produced by Cheshire County Council in partnership with the Cheshire and Warrington Tourism Board and the Northwest Development Agency.
The site was written and designed by Japanese professionals working with the partner organisations specifically to meet the expectations of the Japanese audience.
Hiroyuki Kishino, Minister Plenipotentiary at the Embassy of Japan in London, commented: “I am very impressed by the initiative that has been shown by Cheshire County Council and its partners to develop a facility that goes well beyond anything that has been made available elsewhere.”
He continued: “This is also a valuable contribution to promoting mutual understanding of each other’s culture and environment which is also very welcome.”
The site was designed in Japan by Iponics Japan Ltd. Extensive research has ensured that the site reflects the design and content expectations of Japanese users, and focuses on the areas of history and culture that are both familiar and popular with existing and potential visitors from Japan.
Cheshire County Council Chief Executive, Jeremy Taylor, welcomed the development of the new resource as the latest strengthening of links between Japan and Cheshire.
“The majority of Japanese language websites are translation of existing sites. www.cheshire.jp is a resource specifically created by Japanese people, for Japanese people.
“The new site also builds on the growing relationship Cheshire has with Japan which is something I very much welcome.
Cheshire and Warrington Tourism Board Chief Executive Chris Brown commented:
“If we are to meet our targets of doubling visitor income to 1.5 billion by 2015 and create more than 12,000 new jobs, it’s essential that we maximise the potential of this important market.”
Mr. Brown continued: “In 2003, a massive £8million was spent by Japanese visitors during 19,000 visits to the north west. We want to build on that contribution and get it back to levels of pre foot and mouth, SARS and 9/11 when the spend was over £17 million, with twice as many visits.
Northwest Development Agency provided extensive funding for the project.