TOURISM IN the south-west of England has done well despite this year‘s wet weather, according to a survey. 

Almost 45% of businesses covered in South West Tourism‘s quarterly Business Barometer survey for July to September reported an increase in turnover, with 27% reporting similar revenues to last season.

Overall, respondents reported a 5% increase in business volume compared with the third quarter of 2003, said Robin Barker, deputy chief executive of SW Tourism.

“Despite a tough year in terms of weather, economic climate and increased foreign competition, this has been a bumper year for the region,” he said.

But poor weather during half-term would knock figures for the year as a whole, and could affect next year‘s bookings as well, he added.

Chief executive Malcolm Bell said businesses were also suffering from increasing cost burdens, which had caused a slight reduction in profits.

“We are predicting an increasingly competitive and potentially difficult trading year in 2005,” he said.

“Our message to the industry is that they need to invest in creative marketing campaigns in order to attract customers for the coming year.”
 
SW Tourism would be launching a major marketing campaign in spring 2005, based around some of the region‘s most attractive holiday experiences, he added.