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Development of a Tourism Growth Strategy for Lancashire

Marketing Lancashire is seeking to appoint a suitably qualified, experienced and independent single company or consortia to support the development of a new Tourism Growth Strategy for Lancashire. The approach required is a collaborative one that should build on progress made against the 2016-2020 Lancashire Visitor Economy Strategy and engage public, private and third sector stakeholders in setting out a clearly articulated, refreshed vision for driving sustainable, innovative, resilient and inclusive sector growth.

Introduction

Host to over 67 million visitors each year, Lancashire has a compelling story to tell – from the UK’s favourite seaside resort, 137 miles of natural coastline, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the Queen’s castle in the North to an array of historic houses,  museums, family attractions and a year-round calendar of festivals and events. Alongside award winning food producers, gastropubs and restaurants, glamping sites, boutique hotels and spas they provide a diverse and distinctive cultural narrative that helps to share Lancashire’s story through the rich quality of life and leisure experiences they deliver for both visitors and those who live, work and study here.

The visitor economy is integral to the county’s economic success and prosperity; identified by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership as one of 7 leading business sectors for the county, tourism accounts for around 7% of Lancashire’s economy (worth £29bn in GVA) and 11% of jobs. Sector growth trends from 2014 are strong (+15%) with the sector valued at £4.35 billion in 2017, the third largest region, by value, across the northwest (Source STEAM 2017).[1]

However, set against an ever-changing external landscape, competition from destinations both within the UK and overseas is fiercer than ever with consumer trends and behaviour driven by a range of influences from continued globalisation and innovations in technology to political uncertainties, not least those surrounding BREXIT. The continued growth and prosperity of Lancashire’s visitor economy will thus be dependent upon how, as a destination, it responds to the demands, attitudes and behaviour of key visitor markets both now and in the future.

We need to better understand those trends and external influences that will present    opportunities and challenges for Lancashire so that the sector can respond proactively in a way that will enhance its competitiveness and maximise its capacity for growth. This will mean working our assets harder, as well as investing in new ones, to maintain growth trends and strengthen our positioning as a compelling visitor destination, drawing out our distinctive qualities and being bolder in the way we tell our story.

[1] Lancashire’s visitor economy is valued at £4.35 bn, the third largest in the northwest, set against Manchester £8.1bn, Liverpool City region £4.53 bn, Cheshire and Warrington at £3.37 bn and Cumbria £2.9 bn (Source STEAM 2017)

Background / context

Marketing Lancashire is the designated Destination Management Organisation (DMO) for the county, working in partnership across public, private and third sectors as well as representing approximately 500 visitor economy businesses through our commercial partnership base. The organisation also delivers marketing and communications support for the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership and is wholly committed to raising the profile of the county as a leading national and international destination to visit, live, work, study and invest.

The 2016 – 2020 Visitor Economy Strategy and Destination Management Plan set out to provide a strategic steer for the development and growth of Lancashire’s visitor economy, including how the sector would maximise tourism’s contribution to the wider economy, employment opportunities and quality of life through a series of priority action areas.

The scope of this tender includes undertaking a succinct review of progress against this plan in determining Lancashire’s current positioning and forming a baseline against which the new strategy will be developed.

For full details and all requirements click here  ITT Tourism Growth Strategy

Deadline for tender submissions 12 noon Friday 30 August 2019