Tourism still major contributor to Lewes District economy

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TOURISM continues to make a significant contribution to the local economy, according to figures released by Lewes District Council.

The results of the 2010 Economic Impact Study of Tourism – undertaken by Tourism South East – identifies that despite a difficult economic climate the value of tourism remains stable, contributing an estimated £155.08 million visitor spend to the District’s economy.

The study also indicates that the high level of tourism spend was generated by more than 3.1 million visitors into the district, 83 per cent domestic visits and 17 per cent overseas visitors.

The tourism industry also supports an estimated 2,300 jobs locally, representing 7.2 per cent of the total workforce, covering a range of service sectors including local accommodation, visitor attractions, catering and retail.

Lewes District Council, via its Tourism and Economic Development Service, is committed to supporting the local tourism industry and the contribution it makes to the local economy.

Through the tourism destination brand ‘Enjoy Sussex’, it produces an annual visitor guide and new look website, www.enjoysussex.info, which continues to attract new and returning visitors.

The ongoing promotion also ensures that the District is able to compete with other UK destinations at a regional, national and international level.

Councillor Tony Nicholson, Leader of Lewes District Council, said: “Despite the current economic climate, I’m pleased that the results of our 2010 economic impact study confirms that the tourism industry continues to play an essential role in a successful and buoyant local economy, providing many jobs.

“Throughout 2011 we have worked hard to promote the whole district as a unique destination within the UK. As we move into 2012 we will continue to embrace the tourism opportunities presented by the South Downs National Park, the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations to develop the contribution tourism makes to the local economy.”

The Tourism and Economic Development service also operates the Lewes and Seaford Tourist Information Centres which provide quality front line services to visitors.