City Cruises launches York sightseeing fleet

River Thames sightseeing operator City Cruises officially launched its York sightseeing fleet on Wednesday May 31 with a sunset cruise for tourism partners in York.

Around 85 guests attended the City Cruises York launch event, including Gill Brian, the Sheriff of Yorkshire, Yorkshire County Cricket Club coach Andrew Gale and the club’s rising star all-rounder Jack Leaning.

Representatives of Visit York, local authorities, hotels and tourism businesses including York’s Chocolate Story and York Dungeon were also in attendance.

After the traditional ribbon cutting ceremony at Lendal Bridge Landing, performed by City Cruises’ chief executive Rita Beckwith, the boat set sail for a sunset cruise with champagne and canapes served.

The purchase of York River Boats Cruising for £2.5 million on May 5 saw City Cruises expand beyond its operations in London and Poole to operating 25 boats in three locations across the UK.

The expansion into one of the UK’s most popular tourist cities added to the brand’s successes in 2016, following the £2.4 million refurbishment of the City Alpha on the Thames and the launch of the third ThamesJet boat, further cementing its investment in the UK economy and tourism industry.

City Cruises York is the tour boat operator’s second acquisition outside of London. The existing York model has a much smaller percentage of trade and internet sales; City Cruises will develop the brand further and widen its distribution channels. York sits on the traditional route for coach tours to Scotland and is a huge draw for tourists both locally and internationally.