A CAMPAIGN to drive up the number of overseas visitors to Britain could help Blackpool attract more foreign tourists.
VisitBritain wants to boost the number of foreign holidaymakers to the UK from the current figure of around 31 million to 40 million by 2020
The rise would represent a three per cent year-on-year increase and deliver a £8.7bn boost to the economy.
It is hoped tourism bosses can build on the success of the Olympic Games and Paralympics.
Tourism leaders in Blackpool today welcomed the campaign.
Iain Hawkins, boss of the Merlin cluster of attractions in the resort, said: “This is obviously a good campaign, but it is also about how we distribute these visitors across the UK so coastal towns like Blackpool benefit.
“In this respect Blackpool’s links to London, including rail links, are very important.
“The launch of the Resort Pass will also help bring in foreign visitors, because it provides online access so people can book a package to visit Blackpool’s attractions wherever in the world they are planning to visit from.”
Coun Graham Cain, cabinet member for tourism and culture, said: “What’s important now is that we can bring tourists back into the UK again, and this time into resorts like ours.
“Overseas tourists are a huge boost to Blackpool, as they stay in the town for longer, therefore spending more money on hotel rooms, in shops, restaurants and attractions, all of which then goes into the pockets of everyday workers in the town.”
Coun Maxine Callow, lead scrutiny member for tourism, added overnight visitors were what the resort needed.
She said: “Competitors who visit the World Dance Championships in Blackpool say we have the two best ballrooms in the world in The Tower and the Winter Gardens.
“So we should be jumping on the bandwagon with this and attracting more visitors from abroad.
“These are visitors who have deep pockets and may stay overnight.”
VisitBritain chairman Christopher Rodrigues added: “This summer has shown what the country can do when we are united in a common cause.”