2013 becomes record-breaking year for York tourist attractions

York Press: Clifford's Tower illuminated earlier this year, when the National Railway Museum celebrated the 75th anniversary of Mallard's record-breaking run. Both sites have reported growth this year. Clifford's Tower illuminated earlier this year, when the National Railway Museum celebrated the 75th anniversary of Mallard's record-breaking run. Both sites have reported growth this year.

RECORD-BREAKING visitor numbers have been reported at York’s biggest tourist attractions with an eight per cent rise this year.

This has proved to be the best year since records began almost a decade ago, according to tourism figures from York’s tourism agency Visit York.

The organisation monitors visitor levels through a poll of nine of the city’s largest attractions; the National Railway Museum, York Minster, Jorvik, York Castle Museum, YorkBoat, York’s CHOCOLATE Story, Clifford’s Tower, the Yorkshire Museum and York Dungeon.

Visits to the largest attractions since the start of 2013, up to October, have increased eight per cent from 2,100,901 in 2012 to 2,485,133 in 2013.

Events at the National Railway Museum, the Orb and Undercroft at York Minster and Richard III artefacts at the Yorkshire Museum have all been contributing factors to what Visit York has said are the city’s best tourism figures in over a decade.

Jim Lowe, visitor experience operations manager at the National Railway Museum said: “We have been thrilled with the visitor numbers of 2013 which have exceeded our forecasted visitors for this year.

“It’s been a fantastic year for the museum and we hope that 2014 steams along at a similar pace.”

Mr Lowe said NRM’s two headline Great Gathering events showcasing Mallard attracted about a quarter of a million visitors to York, while the total number of visitors for the July Great Gathering came to almost 140,000. 100,000 visitors attended the museum’s Autumn Great Gathering.

He said visitor numbers are currently up around 35 per cent year on year.

Julie Spowart, territory marketing manager at English Heritage, said: “We have had an excellent season at Clifford’s Tower this year, seeing a 25 per cent increase in visitors to date, on the same period last year. We are absolutely delighted.”

Smaller attractions also fared well this summer, with growth of two per cent in August, 13 per cent in September and three per cent in October. In October, the large attractions recorded double-digit growth for the fourth month in a row.

Hotels have also seen an upturn. In September, Visit York recorded a 90.6 per cent hotel room occupancy, the highest for any month in York since the official tourism survey began in 2007 and a rise of four per cent since 2012. Average room rates were three per cent higher at £80.80.

Kate McMullen, head of Visit York, said: “We’re delighted with these fantastic figures. The increase in occupancy levels demonstrates a strong trend for visitors to stay for two or more nights.

“York is performing very well and attracting visitors from the UK and overseas.”

Coun Sonja Crisp, City of York Council’s cabinet member for tourism, called the results excellent and said: “We’re now looking forward to building on this success in 2014.”

Visit York’s visits to attractions research was introduced in 2005.

Comments (20)

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6:03pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Wooah Wooah says...

Great. Now let's fine them all for trespassing on the Lendal Bridge.
Great. Now let's fine them all for trespassing on the Lendal Bridge. Wooah Wooah

6:10pm Mon 2 Dec 13

imassey says...

I would have put money on the first comment being related to Lendal Bridge...
I would have put money on the first comment being related to Lendal Bridge... imassey

6:16pm Mon 2 Dec 13

thecairnman says...

that will change next year when all the fines for Lendal bridge kick in.
Stop the trial now or suffer the tourism loss next year
that will change next year when all the fines for Lendal bridge kick in. Stop the trial now or suffer the tourism loss next year thecairnman

6:37pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Sillybillies says...

Next year will be a disaster with the T de F blighting the end of June and the beginning of July.
Next year will be a disaster with the T de F blighting the end of June and the beginning of July. Sillybillies

6:58pm Mon 2 Dec 13

YorkStone says...

what?! TdF will attract tens of thousands to the city!
what?! TdF will attract tens of thousands to the city! YorkStone

7:28pm Mon 2 Dec 13

accountess says...

Now get some of the money spent on fixing our roads and streets. They are a disgrace, huge grooves and hole everywhere.
Now get some of the money spent on fixing our roads and streets. They are a disgrace, huge grooves and hole everywhere. accountess

7:29pm Mon 2 Dec 13

meme says...

Brilliant news for York
whoever is responsible its good
remember no matter how irritating some tourists can be we are all ambassadors for York and should sell the city and its delights far and wide.
They keep our city pretty well of and anyone who doubts that should go live in Bradford/Middlesbrou
gh/hull/Rotherham etc and see what they are like
Brilliant news for York whoever is responsible its good remember no matter how irritating some tourists can be we are all ambassadors for York and should sell the city and its delights far and wide. They keep our city pretty well of and anyone who doubts that should go live in Bradford/Middlesbrou gh/hull/Rotherham etc and see what they are like meme

7:35pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Mr John says...

With all this extra income, does this mean that Council Tax bills will finally start to fall next year?
With all this extra income, does this mean that Council Tax bills will finally start to fall next year? Mr John

8:01pm Mon 2 Dec 13

yorkandproud says...

Sillybillies wrote:
Next year will be a disaster with the T de F blighting the end of June and the beginning of July.
Living up to your name Sillybilly.
[quote][p][bold]Sillybillies[/bold] wrote: Next year will be a disaster with the T de F blighting the end of June and the beginning of July.[/p][/quote]Living up to your name Sillybilly. yorkandproud

8:23pm Mon 2 Dec 13

yorkonafork says...

But...but...if two stores are built 3 miles away York will die and become like Castleford despite all attractions being in the City centre and unmoveable.
But...but...if two stores are built 3 miles away York will die and become like Castleford despite all attractions being in the City centre and unmoveable. yorkonafork

8:54pm Mon 2 Dec 13

ouseswimmer says...

I bet the Royal Armouries are kicking themselves for choosing Leeds and not coming to York. Their visitor numbers are a disaster.
I bet the Royal Armouries are kicking themselves for choosing Leeds and not coming to York. Their visitor numbers are a disaster. ouseswimmer

9:01pm Mon 2 Dec 13

AntMcM says...

Is the Tour de France allowed over Lendal Bridge?
Is the Tour de France allowed over Lendal Bridge? AntMcM

9:04pm Mon 2 Dec 13

tizme says...

Sillybillies wrote:
Next year will be a disaster with the T de F blighting the end of June and the beginning of July.
Are cycles allowed across the bridge? Shame, they could have rerouted them and fined them all. Yes, I fear we will see a drop in visitors. The council doesn't seem to realise that there are websites which will warn visitors about our city being run by modern day Dick Turpins. Or should that read modern day Dicks.
[quote][p][bold]Sillybillies[/bold] wrote: Next year will be a disaster with the T de F blighting the end of June and the beginning of July.[/p][/quote]Are cycles allowed across the bridge? Shame, they could have rerouted them and fined them all. Yes, I fear we will see a drop in visitors. The council doesn't seem to realise that there are websites which will warn visitors about our city being run by modern day Dick Turpins. Or should that read modern day Dicks. tizme

10:00pm Mon 2 Dec 13

mary poppins21 says...

If this is true then why has the footfall in York dropped........ Did they all fly around the city?
If this is true then why has the footfall in York dropped........ Did they all fly around the city? mary poppins21

10:00pm Mon 2 Dec 13

piemagico says...

Well done to all the York visitor attractions on a fantastic performance in 2013. Particularly the Railway Museum which managed to lure people indoors throughout the hot summer.
Well done to all the York visitor attractions on a fantastic performance in 2013. Particularly the Railway Museum which managed to lure people indoors throughout the hot summer. piemagico

12:54am Tue 3 Dec 13

Magicman! says...

YorkStone wrote:
what?! TdF will attract tens of thousands to the city!
Indeed... just a shame certain people don't have minds open/large enough to comprehend that.
[quote][p][bold]YorkStone[/bold] wrote: what?! TdF will attract tens of thousands to the city![/p][/quote]Indeed... just a shame certain people don't have minds open/large enough to comprehend that. Magicman!

7:59am Tue 3 Dec 13

CaroleBaines says...

Excellent and welcome news!
Excellent and welcome news! CaroleBaines

10:01am Tue 3 Dec 13

far2bizzy says...

"Visitor numbers . . .have increased eight per cent from 2,100,901 . . to 2,485,133". Back to school I think, Ms Knowlson.
"Visitor numbers . . .have increased eight per cent from 2,100,901 . . to 2,485,133". Back to school I think, Ms Knowlson. far2bizzy

11:07am Tue 3 Dec 13

roskoboskovic says...

such a shame then that us lifelong residents can t share in all this.we are treated as second class citizens at best and the council just use us as their personal cash cow.
such a shame then that us lifelong residents can t share in all this.we are treated as second class citizens at best and the council just use us as their personal cash cow. roskoboskovic

4:35pm Tue 3 Dec 13

Madasanibbotson says...

New CYC Panto

Merrett dressed as tight fisted scruffy old man-easy for make up department
Simply-Laing-leave that to you folks
Jimmy Alexander-Taking pickpocketing lessons.

Act 1-Merrett counting all the fines on 24th Dec
Act 2-Jimmy fleecing tourists
Act 3- Cinders aka Simply-Laing left at home with no Euro Parliament sorry Ball to go to.
New CYC Panto Merrett dressed as tight fisted scruffy old man-easy for make up department Simply-Laing-leave that to you folks Jimmy Alexander-Taking pickpocketing lessons. Act 1-Merrett counting all the fines on 24th Dec Act 2-Jimmy fleecing tourists Act 3- Cinders aka Simply-Laing left at home with no Euro Parliament sorry Ball to go to. Madasanibbotson

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