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03 Sep 2015

UK set to become ‘major player’ in wine tourism

Britain has been tipped to become a significant destination for wine tourism, with vineyards and wineries across the country currently attracting more visitors than ever before.

According to the Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA), wine tourism remains an untapped asset for continued growth in the tourism sector. It says that with the bulk of English vineyards within an hour’s train journey from London, wine tourism could be key in helping to grow the UK tourism industry.

Citing David Cameron’s recently announced Five Point Plan to boost tourism outside of London, the WSTA believes vineyards could be key to tempting tourists away from the capital and boosting overall spend. It says the average wine traveller in the USA spends £650 per trip on wine-related activities, underlining the potential of wineries to persuade visitors to “deliver fantastic growth for UK Plc.”

With 470 vineyards and growing, the UK wine industry is beginning to grow in stature and visitor numbers are starting to reflect that. Eager to capitalise on their growing popularity, many wineries are adding restaurants, cafés and even accommodation to their premises to keep visitor numbers growing.

“We have seen considerable growth in the wine tourism industry over recent years and it is fantastic that vineyards across the UK are starting to feel the very real benefits from this growth,” said Miles Beale, chief executive of the WSTA.

“With an ever-increasing number of tourists, as well as a growing export market for English wine, it is an exciting realisation that our vineyards and wineries are competing with the best in the world.”

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