Marketing Cheshire welcomed VisitBritain/VisitEngland chief executive Sally Balcombe to Cheshire to showcase the strengths and assets of the area’s visitor economy.
As part of her visit, Ms Balcombe was given a whistle-stop tour of the best of Chester’s tourist attractions and stayed at Edgar House, recently awarded Trip Advisor’s Best Small Hotel in the world accolade.
Her itinerary included a tour of Islands at Chester Zoo, where she was also joined by Cheshire West and Chester Council leader Samantha Dixon, a tour of Chester Cathedral, lunch at Chester Grosvenor’s Brasserie, a walk of the Walls to Chester Castle, and dinner at the Racecourse’s 1539.
During the tour, she met with representatives from Chester Zoo, Storyhouse, Crewe Hall, Cheshire Oaks, Combermere Abbey and Jodrell Bank to learn more about Cheshire’s tourism economy, which has seen rates of 7-9% growth over the last few years and heard about exciting plans for Chester, with its new iconic theatre well under way, the potential to open up towers on the walls and the castle, and capitalising on the significant increase the city has seen in hotel occupancy over the last two years.
She also discussed the opportunity that HS2 and the Square Kilometre Array will bring to Cheshire East.
Sally said: “I was delighted to visit Chester to learn more about the wealth of exciting initiatives to develop its competitive tourism offering. The potential for growth is enormous and we look forward to working with Marketing Cheshire and partners to boost tourism across the region.”
Chief executive of Marketing Cheshire Katrina Michel said: “It was great to welcome Sally to Cheshire to demonstrate the exciting work underway to grow our tourism economy. Cheshire has a great mix, from excellent heritage to designer shopping, luxury hotels and world class attractions, and Sally’s visit was a great opportunity to show how partners are working together to deliver a quality visitor experience and drive further growth in the sector.”