South Bank BID is very pleased to be a strategic partner and founding member of an important new initiative that’s aimed at promoting London to domestic visitors and tourists.
Speaking at the recent London & Partners’ Tourism Means Business event, The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan announced the initiative, which is supported by the Greater London Authority, Transport for London and a number of strategic partners, including several BIDs in Central London, including South Bank. The consortium has raised nearly £1.5m to invest in major domestic marketing campaigns throughout 2019 and 2020.
Hywel Mathias, Divisional Director for Merlin London, who own a number of attractions on South Bank, including the London Eye and the SEALIFE London Aquarium, commented: “Merlin were delighted to invest in this consortium through the South Bank BID. In 2019 more than ever it is essential to the tourism market to promote London across the UK including the many cultural venues and visitor attractions that make South Bank such a unique and unforgettable destination. I hope to see this activity bring more people back to London to discover or rediscover our amazing capital city. We look forward to working with South Bank BID and London & Partners as these campaigns develop”.
Nic Durston, Chief Executive of South Bank BID commented: “Domestic tourism delivers high economic value for London – 13% greater than spend from international tourists. However, domestic tourism growth has been falling in recent years. This consortium will deliver a substantial investment in major domestic marketing campaigns, designed to attract visitors to our amazing city. By investing in this programme, South Bank BID is working with its businesses to deliver strong domestic visitor growth to support our hotels, restaurants, retailers, globally-famous cultural institutions and our major tourist attractions – who give South Bank its unique identity as the cultural heart of London, and one of the city’s leading destinations.”
It’s anticipated that the campaigns will run for two seasons – Summer 2019, and Winter 2019/2020.
“We hope our businesses can see the huge opportunity this that brings”, adds Durston. “This is the first year of what will be a three-year investment in a major domestic tourism marketing programme. With The Illuminated River project launching in summer 2020 in South Bank, and Time Out Market arriving in 2021, these are exciting times for our neighbourhood. South Bank BID’s investment in destination marketing, through this programme and through Southbanklondon.com will mean that many of our businesses will benefit from the opportunity that this brings to South Bank.”