England’s historic properties saw visitor numbers increase in 2017

Historic properties in England saw a significant increase in visitor numbers last year, according to a report by VisitEngland.

Properties such as mills, monuments, boats and burial grounds saw a turnout increase of 8%. Historic houses and palaces, along with visitor and heritage centres and places of worship all saw increases of 4% on 2016.

historic england

The most visited free attraction in England was the British Museum, with nearly 6 million visitors. The most visited paid attraction was the Tower of London with 2.8 million visitors.

Minister for Arts, Heritage and Tourism, Michael Ellis, said: “Our world-class attractions have once more proven to be a huge draw for both UK and overseas visitors.

“Whether it be our unique historic places like Stonehenge, museums like Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum, or cultural hubs like NewcastleGateshead – home to the Great Exhibition of the North this summer –  we have attractions that are the envy of the world.

“As we look ahead to the UK’s exit from the European Union, we remain absolutely committed to supporting our tourism sector and boosting local economies up and down the country.”

VisitEngland Chief Executive, Sally Balcombe, said: “Visitor attractions are an important part of our tourism landscape, driving visitors to discover more of England. It is great to see people are getting out and exploring the huge variety of attractions and places of interest on offer across the country, boosting tourism and distributing the benefits across local economies.”

Total visits to England’s attractions rose by 2% in 2017. Visitor attractions also reported increased spending of 7% compared to 2016.

Tourism is worth £106 billion annually to England.

After Britain voted to leave the EU, VisitEngland announced their expectation for a tourism spike. CEO of Merlin Entertainments, Nick Varney, also said in an interview with Blooloop that Brexit is good for Merlin in the long run.

Images courtesy: VisitBritain / Andrew Pickett