Pembrokeshire worth £ 590million tourism – report says



A recently commissioned report by Visit Pembrokeshire on the economic volume and value of tourism in Pembrokeshire from 2017 to 2019 found that 7 million tourists visit the county each year and that tourism offers an annual economic value of £ 590 million to the region.

Tourism is also a key driver of employment in the region, with 12,000 people directly employed in industry, representing more than a fifth (21 percent) of the local workforce.

Visit Pembrokeshire seeks to grow tourism for the benefit of all over the next five years and its 2020-25 Destination Management Plan reflects the continued benefits of investment in the region, while ensuring the protection of the local environment.

The report also found that leisure travel accounts for 86 percent of all trips and the majority – 96 percent – stay in paid accommodation, with the average length of stay being just over four nights.

Average spend is £ 32 per trip for day visitors and £ 55 per night for overnight visitors, with June through September confirmed as the busiest dates and August being the month of point.

Many Pembrokeshire tourism businesses have made significant investments in recent years, helping to boost both local employment and the wider local economy, while ensuring they remain environmentally conscious.

The projects include:

• Bluestone National Park Resort’s £ 15million investment in building 80 new, independent, eco-friendly lodges that will support 250 jobs in the construction phase alone. It is expected that the new lodges will increase local spending by £ 1.5million and provide additional purchasing power of £ 1million in Pembrokeshire.

• A £ 10million investment in Saundersfoot Port has resulted in an overhaul of the port area and improved access, ensuring its long-term viability. The port now has a new Center of Marine Excellence, with an on-site RYA sailing school, as well as the Harbor Bites Café, marine supply stores and a workshop, as well as the Outer Reef water sports center. This summer, Ocean Cabins – pod-style accommodation – along with a covered venue for events and retail stores will open.

• An investment of £ 4million, backed by £ 1.7million from European regional development funds, enabled Welsh Water Adventure at Lake Llys-y-Frân to open in July 2021. The national park and the reservoir include a new outdoor activity center and a waterfront cabin for walkers, cyclists and water sports enthusiasts.

• Grove of Narberth has been awarded 5 stars by the AA and is one of only three hotels in Wales to achieve this level of excellence in hospitality. The hotel recently launched six new cottage suites, three of which have stunning solar glass extensions designed by an architect to bring the outdoors in without affecting the attractive look of traditional stone buildings.

• In 2017, Folly Farm invested £ 700,000 in biomass heating, saving 700 tonnes of carbon emissions per year. The popular zoo recently invested in 18 new electric karts designed and built by a Welsh family business, Formula K.

• The Ty Hotel Milford Waterfront is scheduled to open in Milford Haven in Spring 2022. The 100-room hotel will be managed by the Celtic Manor Resort as part of its expanding Celtic property collection. The hotel will overlook the marina and bring employment to the area.

Emma Thornton, Managing Director of Visit Pembrokeshire, said: “This recent report illustrates the importance of tourism to the local Pembrokeshire economy.

“As we come out of the Covid-19 pandemic, we know we are ready for an exceptionally busy summer that presents great opportunities for our beautiful county but also brings some challenges.

“The role of Visit Pembrokeshire, working with partners across the county, will be to ensure our visitors have the best possible experience, to support the resumption of activities and to lead the development of a new type of regenerative tourism that seeks to balancing the economy with the well-being of our natural resources and our local communities.

Clr. Paul Miller, Cabinet Member for Economics, Tourism, Leisure and Culture, said: “The report once again underlines the vital importance of tourism to the Pembrokeshire economy.

“The County Council continues to invest significantly in this area, providing many basic services that visitors rely on, such as beach management, public toilets and coastal bus services, in addition to supporting Visit Pembrokeshire.

“The economic impact demonstrated by this report certainly justifies this investment, which is even greater given the enormous impact the pandemic has had on the industry. “

Clr. Di Clements, Vice Chairman of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority, said: “Pembrokeshire has earned its reputation as one of the UK’s top tourist destinations and its popularity continues to grow.

“These figures, dating from before the pandemic, show a positive increase in the number of visitors, which we are sure will increase further as more and more people choose Pembrokeshire as the destination of choice for their stay.

“The national park is the foundation of the tourist economy of Pembrokeshire. We strive to keep the park special so that it can be enjoyed today and by future generations, and we encourage all who visit to support this work by pledging to walk lightly and leave no traces.

“We recognize that increasing visitor numbers place greater pressures on our natural environment, so the importance of working in partnership to deliver a sustainable approach to visitor management is more important than ever. “

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