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Gloucestershire Business News

Half a million pounds to boost Gloucestershire businesses

A new project to promote tourism across Gloucestershire has won £250,000 of Government funding which will see double that invested in boosting the sector.

The Uncover the Cotswolds project - encompassing the Cotswolds, Cheltenham, Gloucester, Forest of Dean and Wye Valley - has won the money from VisitEngland's £40million Discover England Fund.

As the heart of the fund is goal of ensuring England "stays competitive in the rapidly growing global tourism industry, through offering world-class English tourism" to the right customers.

All awards are supported by match funding from partners in the public and private sectors.

The project is aimed at driving inbound tourism with a focus on attracting visitors from the Nordic markets, from Italy and Spain, dispersing visitors across the county and providing them with greater access to authentic local experiences.

Sally Graff, project leader for Cotswolds Tourism, said: "We will focus on showcasing the incredible experiences available throughout the year to encourage more off-peak visits and providing them with bookable itineraries to help them extend their stay.

"Supporting the many small businesses across the destination area to understand the travel trade opportunities is the key to unlocking the wider tourism experience.

"We will bring together the wider Cotswolds region, incorporating the destination management organisations of not only the Cotswolds but also the Forest of Dean & Wye Valley, Marketing Cheltenham and Marketing Gloucester."

Maureen McAllister of Forest of Dean & Wye Valley Tourism said: "We are delighted to be part of this partnership encouraging visitors to discover more and explore the fabulous Cotswolds, Forest of Dean and Wye Valley region.

"The core themes are perfect for our area, including: food and drink; local traditions; history and heritage; arts, crafts and skills; adrenaline adventures; nature and wildlife; royalty; music; and film and TV locations."

Kelly Ballard, manager of Marketing Cheltenham, said: "We plan to use the project to develop and promote Cheltenham based 'experiences' - particularly around history and heritage, food and drink, as well as culture - and anticipate that many will choose Cheltenham as a convenient base for what could be up to 14-day holiday."

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