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VisitEngland records strong increase in domestic tourism

Figures released today by VisitEngland, the national tourist board, reveal the number of domestic overnight trips taken in England in September last year grew by 22 per cent compared to 2010, while spend increased by 13 per cent.

Holiday trips in particular were up by 19 per cent during September and visits to friends and relatives grew by 33 per cent, most probably boosted by the unusually warm weather enjoyed across the country.

Considering the year to date, the number of holiday trips taken in England from January to September 2011 grew by five per cent, compared to 2010.

This represents almost 40million trips taken in the first nine months of the year, which is above pre-recession levels.

Holiday spend for the same period increased 11 per cent compared to 2010.

All types of locations experienced an increase in holiday trips during this period; small towns fared the best with a rise of ten per cent. Trips to the countryside and villages were up eight per cent, and visits to the seaside grew by three per cent.

James Berresford, chief executive of VisitEngland, commented: “The breadth and diversity of what England has to offer as a destination is evidenced by the fact that holiday trips have increased across the board; town, coast and countryside alike all welcomed more domestic visitors in the first nine months of 2011 than in 2010.

“The rise in the amount of visits to friends and relations is also very encouraging, as it is the perfect opportunity for hosts to show off all that’s great about their local area.”