STATE OF TOURISM SOUTH WEST

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STATE OF TOURISMSOUTH WESTThe Tourism Company11a High StreetLedburyHerefordshireHR8 1DSIn association with:L & R ConsultingGeoff Broom AssociatesTEAMJuly 2003

CONTENTSINTRODUCTION. 1Purpose of the Tourism Intelligence Study. 1Components of the Tourism Intelligence Data Resource . 1Methodology adopted . 3Existing tourism intelligence in the South West. 5How to use this Data Resource . 71CURRENT VISITORS AND ECONOMIC IMPACT. 81.11.21.31.41.52MARKET FORECASTS . 302.12.22.32.43Perceptions of the South West. 49Segmenting the market . 53A market overview . 56Strategic priorities . 65TOURISM INDUSTRY SIZE AND DISTRIBUTION . 684.14.24.34.45UK tourist activity . 30Implications of national changes . 37Projections for the South West . 37Day trips. 46MARKET PROFILES AND OPPORTUNITIES . 493.13.23.33.44Regional overview. 8Tourism trends. 10Sub-regional differences . 11Market sector profiles. 20Economic impact. 28Accommodation . 68Visitor attractions and activities . 76Retail and Food & Drink . 79Standard Industrial Classifications . 81TOURISM INDUSTRY PERFORMANCE AND NEEDS . 835.15.25.35.45.5Business turnover and utilisation. 84Market and business trends . 90Business investment . 95Employment and training . 98Business support and marketing . 102

6REGIONAL TOURISM PRODUCT OVERVIEW. 1076.16.26.36.46.56.67COMPETITIVE POSITION. 1197.17.27.37.47.58Comparison of market performance . 119Comparison of tourism enterprises. 130Comparison of market perceptions. 135Comparison of promotional material. 138Comparison of strategies . 142KNOWLEDGE COORDINATION AND ACCESS . 1448.18.29Inland countryside. 109Protected rural areas. 110Seaside resorts . 112Rural coast. 114Large towns and cities . 115Small towns and cities. 117The SW Tourism Knowledge Base. 144A tourism industry intelligence system . 145KEY IMPLICATIONS FOR THE 10 YEAR TOURISM PLAN . 147SEGMENT PROFILES . iA1GENERAL BUSINESS TOURISM (UK) . iiA2DISCRETIONARY BUSINESS TOURISM (MICE) . vBVISITING FRIENDS AND RELATIVES . viiiC1PRE-FAMILY HOLIDAYS AND BREAKS. xiC2FAMILY HOLIDAYS AND BREAKS .xivC3POST FAMILY HOLIDAYS . xviiC4BREAKS (1-6 nights) . xxC5LONG HOLIDAYS (7 nights) . xxiiC6ACTIVITY AND SPECIAL INTEREST HOLIDAYS . xxivC7DOMESTIC GROUP HOLIDAYS . xxviiD1OVERSEAS VISITORS - USA .xxxD2OVERSEAS VISITORS LONG HAUL – AUSTRALIA. xxxiiD3OVERSEAS EUROPEAN VISITORS – GERMANY . xxxivD4OVERSEAS EUROPEAN MARKETS - FRANCE. xxxviD5OVERSEAS EUROPEAN VISITORS – IRELAND.xxxviiiE1INDEPENDENT LEISURE DAY VISITS. xlE2LEISURE DAY TRIPS – GROUP MARKET . xlii

INTRODUCTIONThis report brings together the findings of the South West Tourism Intelligence Study,which was commissioned by South West Tourism and the South West RegionalDevelopment Agency (SWERDA) towards the end of 2002.The study was carried out by The Tourism Company, who were the lead consultants.Key inputs were also made by L&R Consulting (on product auditing andperformance), Geoff Broom Associates (on forecasting) and TEAM (on datamanagement).Purpose of the Tourism Intelligence StudySouth West Tourism and SWERDA are shortly to develop a Ten Year Plan forTourism. The purpose of this study is to underpin this process through providing acomprehensive set of data on tourism supply and demand. Previous information hasbeen deemed to be too partial in scope or limited in geographical coverage to informthe development of the strategy. The study seeks to provide a bible of intelligencethat can be accessed by stakeholders and drive strategic thinking.The main focus of the study is on regional level information, to inform regional bodiesand the regional strategy on product, value, performance, markets, forecasts, broadsub-regional differences and comparison with competitor regions. However, thisassemblage of data at a regional level will also be of value to local destinations andenterprises in their work.Where information is presented at a sub-regional level, this is organised on what isessentially a county basis: Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset,Wiltshire and the combined unitary authorities which make up the former county ofAvon. These are sometimes referred to in the report as sub-regions. On a fewoccasions, these sub-regions are grouped into three intermediate areas: Devon andCornwall; Dorset and Somerset; and Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and former Avon.Components of the Tourism Intelligence Data ResourceThe study was divided into eight components, which together provide a dataresource for tourism. These are as follows:1 Current visitors and economic impactThe basic trips, nights and spending figures for the South West Region,broken down and discussed on the basis of visit type and sub-region (county),together with summary results from a separate study calculating tourismemployment based on the Cambridge model.South West Tourism Intelligence ProjectThe Tourism Company (with Geoff Broom Associates, L&R Consulting, TEAM)1

2 Market forecastsNew quantified forecasts of trips, nights and spending at a national level(specially prepared for this study) subsequently translated into projections forthe South West covering domestic visitors by type, overseas visitors by regionof origin, and day visitors.3 Market profiles and opportunitiesA structured presentation of facts about current and potential future markets,including overall perceptions of the South West, summary tables and bulletpoints about the main market sectors, and identification of 17 practical marketsegments. Individual Fact Sheets are also provided on each marketsegment, highlighting their characteristics, needs and relevance to the SouthWest.4 Tourism industry size and distributionAn assessment of existing databases and other evidence providing anestimate of the number of tourism enterprises in the region and theirdistribution.5 Tourism industry performance and needsEvidence, broken down by tourism industry sector, on levels of business,trends, needs and outlook, together with information on investment, levels ofemployment, training and attitudes to business support and sustainability.6 Regional tourism product overviewA broad yet systematic description of the region’s product based on sixdestination types, including consideration of enterprise make up,performance, characteristics, challenges and opportunities.7 Competitive positionAnalysis of the South West’s market share, and assessment of its positionwith respect to six competitive areas in terms of consumer perceptions,product, presentation and strategic priorities.8 Knowledge coordination and accessProposals for the creation of a better, accessible repository of tourismknowledge to be held and maintained by South West Tourism, together with asystem for receiving up to date information on business performance.This report contains each of these eight sections. In addition, a final section pulls outsome of the main findings and identifies implications for the ten year plan for tourism.South West Tourism Intelligence ProjectThe Tourism Company (with Geoff Broom Associates, L&R Consulting, TEAM)2

Methodology adoptedThree main pieces of original research were undertaken for this study: the creation and utilisation of a forecasting model; qualitative market research based on consumer focus groups; and a survey of tourism businesses across the region.In addition, a considerable amount of work was undertaken to extract from existingsurveys and published information, including qualifying and updating this materialwhere necessary.The forecasting modelAn econometric modelling approach was adopted to come up with quantitativeforecasts for the volume and value of tourism in the region in 2006 and 2011. Thisinvolved: Generating national forecasts by identifying the main factors affecting differenttypes of domestic and overseas trip taking, such as disposable income andexchange rates, and then considering likely changes in these factors such as theinfluence of demographic changes. Examining the relative share of the national market for different types of tourismcaptured by the South West, looking at trends in this market share and factorsthat may influence it, and applying estimates of future market share to thenational forecasts to derive estimates for the South West for different types oftourism.Consumer focus groupsNine focus groups were conducted during February and March 2003. The groupswere recruited to enable distinctions to be drawn between: Life-stage – pre-family, family and post-family Level of affluence – household income under or over 30,000 Experience of the South West – ‘visitors’ had been for a minimum of one 4 nightholiday or two short breaks in the last 3 years; ‘non-visitors’ had not visited in thelast 3 years.The groups were conducted in the West Midlands and South East (west of London),two important source locations for short breaks and holidays in the South West.Group make-up was as follows: Pre-family, affluent, visitors – Sutton Coldfield Pre-family, less affluent, visitors – Solihull Pre-family, mixed affluence, non-visitors – Windsor Family, affluent, visitors – Chorleywood Family, less affluent, visitors – Windsor Family, mixed affluence, non-visitors – Sutton Coldfield Post-family, affluent, visitors – Chorleywood Post-family, less affluent, visitors, Solihull Post-family, mixed affluence, non-visitors – ChorleywoodSouth West Tourism Intelligence ProjectThe Tourism Company (with Geoff Broom Associates, L&R Consulting, TEAM)3

The results of the focus groups have been used throughout this report, but principallyin Chapters 3 and 7. A comprehensive report of the focus group findings by themarket research agency employed, Cambridge Direction, has been supplied to SouthWest Tourism.The business surveyA postal survey of tourism businesses was undertaken in February – March 2003.Questionnaires were mailed to 3,175 businesses, using a stratified sample to berepresentative of the geographical and sectoral make up of the industry. Thedatabase used was the TRIPS database supplied by South West Tourism,supplemented by the database of establishments kept by Gloucestershire Tourismand the Dorset and New Forest Partnership.The questionnaire was quite comprehensive, with questions covering the profile ofthe enterprise, business performance and trends, investment, employment, training,business support and sustainability. A copy is placed in Appendix 1.A total of 1190 questionnaires were returned, a response rate of 37%. This isconsidered to be an excellent response for a postal survey of this kind. Particularefforts had been taken to achieve this result, including a prize draw, use of remindersand sticking postage stamps on return envelopes.The results were analysed in total and broken down by the five main tourismenterprise types (hotels, guest accommodation, self-catering, holiday parks andattractions) and by certain other variables. A full set of tables, prepared by the dataanalysis company employed, Interviewing Services Ltd., has been supplied to SouthWest Tourism.Interrogation of other data sourcesInformation on the volume, value and distribution of tourism across the region wasobtained from The United Kingdom Tourism Survey (UKTS), the InternationalPassenger Survey (IPS) and the United Kingdom Day Visitor Survey (UKDVS).Information on the supply side was primarily based on the tourist boards’ TRIPSdatabase. A measure of the partiality of this database was obtained and is discussedin Chapter 4. It was beyond the scope of this study to undertake a complete, newaudit of all tourism enterprises in the region.Some manipulation of information from statistical sources was needed in order toprovide figures for the whole South West Region rather than the former West CountryTourist Board Region (which had excluded Gloucestershire and Eastern Dorset).This was not possible in every case. It is extremely important that all future data iscollected and disseminated using government region boundaries.Various other data sources were consulted in order to build up a picture of tourismmarkets, products and competitor performance. Examples include the ETC Insightsseries of market profiles; BTA profiles on overseas markets; and websites, mainpublications and tourist strategies from competitor destinations.South West Tourism Intelligence ProjectThe Tourism Company (with Geoff Broom Associates, L&R Consulting, TEAM)4

Existing tourism intelligence in the South WestThis Tourism Intelligence Data Resource provides a comprehensive set of marketand product information that seeks to be consistent across the South West region. Itrecognises and does not supplant other current sources of tourism intelligence at aregional and local level. At the outset of the study, a summary of this currentintelligence was prepared. It includes regional, sub-regional and local research anddata sources.Existing regional research by SWTBusiness BarometerA quarterly survey of a panel of 200 tourism accommodation and attractionbusinesses, covering performance and prospects. It is hoped to cover other sectorsin due course and expand the panel to 500 by 2005.Accommodation Occupancy SurveyMonthly survey of serviced accommodation occupancy in the region based onreturns from over 400 establishments and weighted to reflect regional distribution.Goes back to 1999. Some authorities pay for a larger sample in their area.Benchmarking studiesDestination benchmarking surveys, involving a combined visitor survey andbenchmarking against other destinations, are carried out on request for variousauthorities in the region. Around three to four per year. SWT also engage visitorattractions across the region in a confidential benchmarking exercise.Market profilingA service is offered to individual enterprises and destinations, which provides amarket profile of their visitors based on post-code analysis using a standardisedmethodology (Target) established by the regional tourist boards.In addition to these ongoing surveys, South West Tourism, in conjunction with otherpartners, has commissioned other studies into products and markets, although thereappear to be relatively few at a regional level. Recent studies of particular relevanceto this study include: Economic Impact Study – the application of an updated Cambridge Model tocalculate income and employment attributable to tourism, enabling consistentcomparisons across all districts and counties. Branding exercise – development of regional and sub-regional brands for theSouth West. EnglandNet DMO research – a survey of record keeping and information handlingat a local level.Sub-regional knowledge baseA wide range of tourism intelligence is obtained at a local level, but this is relativelyuncoordinated across the region.A survey of 53 destination management organisations, including local authorities,national parks and major tourism associations, was undertaken at the outset of thisstudy to ascertain their amount of research-based tourism knowledge at a local level.South West Tourism Intelligence ProjectThe Tourism Company (with Geoff Broom Associates, L&R Consulting, TEAM)5

This achieved a 60% response, including most of the main authorities. The resultsobtained are presented in Appendix 2.There has been some coordination of tourism data within counties:DorsetDorset Market Research Intelligence Group / Dorset Tourism Data Project(Bournemouth University), undertake main and off-peak season visitor surveys,accommodation trends surveys, occupancy surveys, investment monitor, andeconomic impact studies. Information is made available for each district.Devon‘Tourism Trends in Devon’ published annually – systematic data collection ofenterprise performance for 5 sectors, broken down by district. Additional survey ondifferent aspects of enterprise performance/issues. Some market research focusgroups have been conducted at a county level.Somers

South Wes t Tourism Intelligence Project 4 The Tourism Company (with Geoff Broom Associates, L&R Consulting, TEAM) The results of the focus groups have been used throughout this report, but principally in Chapters 3 and 7. A comprehensive report of the focus group findings by the

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