Calderdale set for stay-cation boom

Despite being hit hard by the coronavirus crisis, tourism leaders say that the region is set to become a ‘stay-cation’ hotspot when lockdown is eased.

Thursday, 11th June 2020, 7:00 am
Nicky Chance-Thompson, Chief Executive of the Piece Hall Trust and Director for Welcome to Yorkshire.

A ‘stay-cation’ is when holidaymakers opt for a holiday in the UK, opposed to traveling abroad.

Welcome to Yorkshire has reported an increase in online engagement surrounding holiday attractions, such as Halifax’s historic Piece Hall.

Piece Hall tenants are currently preparing to reopen their doors in the upcoming weeks. They have also been given a three month rent freeze.

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Nicky Chance-Thompson, Chief Executive of the Piece Hall Trust and Director for Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “We wanted to make sure that our tenants had the support and funds needed to survive, as they are what make the Piece Hall so special, if we lost them then we’d lose the heart and soul of the place.

“We’ve been working hard to make sure that visitors can have a safe, comfortable and enjoyable experience.”

Only two of the iconic building’s gates will be in use, one as an entrance and once as an exit.

The Government is also encouraging the public to take staycations and is considering creating an additional bank holiday in October to help the UK tourism industry.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said that he will be “at the forefront of championing the campaign for British tourism” once the sector is ready to reopen, and said the Government’s target remains for this to happen in England “by July 4”.

“We are hoping to get tourism back as rapidly as possible and when it is back we will be investing extensively in ensuring we have a major campaign to encourage British people to take British staycations.”

In other news, Welcome To Yorkshire’s website saw a 47 per cent increase in traffic, with 91 per cent visiting for the first time.

The organisation have taken “substantial steps” to help Yorkshire’s tourism industry recover from the impact of coronavirus.

They have announced a recovery plan for the region, under the banner of “Reopen, Recover and Rebuild.”

Welcome to Yorkshire Chief Executive James Mason said “I have made no secret about the fact that we have so much digital potential going forward and this can provide valuable insight for the industry and key decision makers. “

Mr Mason also stated data suggests that “the UK ‘staycation’ market is really set to boom.”

The organisation have also been offering free support and advice to local businesses during the coronavirus crisis.