Long-term prospects for the Peak District and Derbyshire’s visitor economy look even brighter thanks to confirmation of a £1.49 million grant to boost business quality, profitability and performance.
Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire, the area’s official tourist board, is celebrating news that its bid for cash from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to fund a comprehensive three-year business support programme has been successful.
The tourist board will work closely with Derbyshire County Council and the Peak District National Park Authority (PDNPA) to develop the cycling market and the Peak District brand, promote Derbyshire products, support market towns and help businesses to boost their competitiveness.
PDNPA, together with Derbyshire Dales District Council, will develop the growing, high-spending cycling market through the Pedal Peak Business Initiative. This will include grants to improve cycle facilities, a cycle friendly toolkit to help businesses understand the market, networking events, developing routes and marketing materials and creating and delivering Peak District Cyclist Welcome accreditation.
Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire will concentrate on developing the Peak District brand through ‘Inspired by the Peak District’, involving food and drink producers, creative industries, attractions and service and activity providers.
Working with Business Peak District, it will focus on promotional, marketing and on-line activity and an annual events programme.
The tourist board will also bring in tourism experts and specialist advisers to deliver a wide-ranging programme of business support focusing on international visitors, accessibility, marketing, business to business networking, workshops promoting the Environmental Quality Mark (EQM) and one-to-one advice and development.
Derbyshire County Council will focus on supporting market towns to swell and share visitor numbers, realise their full potential and boost their vibrancy. It will also promote Derbyshire products, with a particular emphasis on food and drink, to improve the quality of local services for visitors and encourage them to spend locally.
Around 400 businesses and their supply chains are set to benefit from the programme, which will be launched over the next few months and will run until the end of March 2019.
Jo Dilley, Managing Director of Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire, said:
“This is very exciting news for tourism businesses across the Peak District and Derbyshire. Working closely with our partners over the next three years, we will be able to drive up their quality and profitability, develop the Peak District and Derbyshire brand and support start-up businesses though initiatives specifically geared to create more jobs in the visitor economy sector, and bring long-term benefits to the local and regional economy.”
Leader of Derbyshire County Council Councillor Anne Western said:
“Derbyshire has many obvious charms but there’s much more to our county than rolling hills and beautiful countryside. Our market towns play a vital role in welcoming visitors to the county as well as providing jobs and services for local people and we look forward to helping to promote all they have to offer visitors. Our ‘Made in Derbyshire’ campaign showcased the people, products and places that make our county great and we’ll work with local businesses to help build on these successes in the future.”
Sarah Fowler, Chief Executive of the Peak District National Park, said:
“This is further confirmation that the Peak District is a great place to visit and do business. Our reputation as a cycling destination continues to grow and this grant will help us help local businesses to make the most of every opportunity though the Pedal Peak District Business Initiative.”
Jim Harrison, Chair of Business Peak District, said:
“As well as the many benefits the project will offer tourism businesses, promoting the ‘Inspired by the Peak District’ logo will help any organisation that uses it to boost both their profile and that of the area. The more all businesses work together, the stronger our voice will be.”
- The Peak District and Derbyshire’s visitor economy currently supports 27,000 jobs and is worth £1.9 billion a year.
- Business Peak District (BPD) is a business driven body which aims to represent the interests of firms within the Peak District and ensure that programmes of support are appropriate to the rural nature of the area. BPD is supported by Local Authority partners including: Derbyshire Dales District Council, High Peak Borough and Staffordshire Moorlands District Councils and the Peak District National Park Authority.
- Marketing Peak District & Derbyshire’s mission is to develop and grow a successful and sustainable tourism economy, working closely with a wide range of partners to make the Peak District and Derbyshire the destination of choice – regionally, nationally and globally.
- The approved business support programme is receiving up to £1.49 million of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Department for Communities and Local Government is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, European Regional Development Fund funds help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding