Coastal project wins £1m from Discover England Fund

A new initiative to woo more foreign tourists to England’s coast has been awarded funding of £1 million from VisitEngland’s Discover England Fund.

Led by the National Coastal Tourism Academy (NCTA), the England’s Coast project will use interactive video technology to enable holidaymakers to create their own itineraries, along the north east, south, south west and east coasts.

England’s Coast will target German, Dutch and French visitors and builds on a successful pilot, ‘the Coastal Pass’, which gained funding in the first year of the Discover England Fund.

The £1 million grant will span two years and is 40% match-funded by the NCTA and its partners from the public and private sector.

Tourism minister John Glen said: “The Discover England Fund is spreading the benefits of our thriving tourism industry to the whole country by helping to strengthen the tourism offer outside of the capital.

“England’s Coast is a great example of how technology can be used to target key markets and make it even easier for international tourists to explore our stunning stretches of coastline.”

Sally Balcombe, VisitEngland chief executive, added: “England’s Coast will develop and connect the coast, extend the season and target European markets, getting more people out exploring everything our coastline has to offer.”

The three-year £40 million Discover England Fund, which runs from 2016-19, aims to develop bookable tourism products for international customers.

Pictured are beach huts in Southwold, Suffolk. Credit: VisitEngland/Diana Jarvis.