Swindon & Wiltshire Business News

Funding boost for rural Wiltshire tourism

 

A touring route from London to Bristol has launched the first phase of its new online travel itineraries focusing on rural Wiltshire.

Twenty-six itineraries have been launched as a result of funding awarded to Great West Way by the LEADER project.

A total of £138 million was made available in England between 2015 and 2020 to local businesses, communities, farmers, foresters and land managers that were able to show that receiving funding would create jobs and to help business growth, which in turn would benefit the rural economy.

Each project was chosen by Local Action Groups, who also distributed the funding. Great West Way received funding from Plain Action/Vale Action Group.

The LEADER funding received by Great West Way has been used to create 11 trade and 15 consumer itineraries.

Each itinerary has been crafted for the purpose of joining up rural tourism in Wiltshire and to ultimately increase visits and spend in towns and rural areas.

Wiltshire has been the focus of the project as it is the most rural area of Great West Way, England’s multi-modal touring route between London and Bristol.

In the first phase of the project, Great West Way has launched three consumer online itineraries, including a Guide to Cycling Breaks from Bradford on Avon, Walking in the North Wessex Downs and a Guide to Canal Boating along the Kennet & Avon Canal.

To coincide with the launch of the itineraries, Great West Way has released a vox pop with Robert Dean, president of the Kennet & Avon Canal Trust, about the waterway and its place on Great West Way.

It is the first of many vox pops that Great West Way will be launching alongside the new 26 travel itineraries.

Fiona Errington, head of marketing at Great West Way, said: “Wiltshire makes up 25 percent of the Great West Way and is mostly rural.

"We were thrilled to have been chosen to receive funding through the LEADER project, and are very pleased with the end result.

"We worked with media agency Green Traveller, who specialise in sustainable travel and who assisted us in putting together the itineraries and online content.

“There has always been interest in trips to rural locations but never more so than now. The online itineraries that we’re launching provide an easy to follow route in areas that are not heavily signposted, giving people the confidence to travel off the beaten track.”

The online travel itineraries will be distributed through consumer, travel trade and media channels.

The first phase of new online itineraries includes, a Guide to Cycling Breaks from Bradford on Avon, a Guide to Canal Boating, and a Guide to Walking in the North Wessex Downs.