English Tourism Week this year was held on 22-31 May 2021. It is an annual celebration of English tourism. English Tourism Week highlights the importance, value and vast contribution of the sector makes to the UK economy to stakeholders including, government, MPs and ministers. VisitEngland leads the annual English Tourism Week campaign celebrating our diverse, exciting and vibrant sector, and showcasing the quality, range and value of English tourism to stakeholders. The week provides an essential opportunity to raise awareness of the sector to key stakeholders including MPs, with VisitEngland working to support English destinations with political engagement nationally, regionally and locally, and the recovery of the sector.
Sarah Dines MP said, ‘Tourism is at the heart of the Derbyshire Dales. Boris Johnson recently declared that where we live "is one of the most beautiful places in the world". Alongside other parliamentary colleagues I lobbied long and hard to ensure that the tourism sector has had access to Government support during the pandemic. It is absolutely vital that our tourism industry survives this pandemic and that those businesses are given the resources to help them as we move out of it. I welcomed Oliver Dowden, the Secretary of State responsible for this essential sector, during his recent visit to Derbyshire Dales to see for himself what our constituency has to offer. He was incredibly impressed with our attractions and pleased to see how they have benefited from government grants during the pandemic.
We are incredibly lucky to have so many places of historical interest such as stately homes, world heritage site mills, landmark museums and also some of the best scenery and walks in the country to go alongside them. As someone who is passionate about the tourism industry, it was with a heavy heart that I was asking people to stay away from Derbyshire Dales during the lockdowns to protect our most vulnerable residents. Now, I am so pleased that we are opening back up and cautiously welcoming people back to Derbyshire Dales in a Covid safe way and boosting our local economy.
I often visit our B&B businesses and it is very good to see they are booked up for the foreseeable future. Derbyshire Dales is the ideal Staycation location. Every person that stays in our area will shop in our local shops, eat in our restaurants and cafes and drink in our pubs, putting money straight back into the local economy and helping us to Build Back Better. During English Tourism Week I met many local businesses such as the Hassop Station, Maynard Arms, Eyam Hall and new destinations that are currently in development such as the renovating of the old cinema in Ashbourne.
We cannot underestimate the importance of the tourism industry to our local economy in Derbyshire Dales. Our tourism sector has received an unprecedented amount of support during the pandemic, which was vital for the industry’s survival. As we move out of the pandemic, it is now up to the British people to ensure that our tourism industry thrives, by supporting our local tourism and hospitality businesses.
This year’s Tourism Week theme was around cycling and we are so lucky to have so many wonderful places to cycle in Derbyshire Dales. Cycling is good for you, great for the environment and fantastic fun. During this tourism week I took the opportunity to ride an electric bike for the first time along the Monsal trail. Hassop Station have traditional bikes and electric bikes to hire, so they can accommodate all fitness levels. With the weather improving now is the time to get on your bikes and enjoy all that Derbyshire has to offer.’’