Destination Bristol

Today’s guest blog is by John Hirst CEO of Visit Bristol where he explores tourism’s role in our great city.

Tourism is an essential part of Bristol, but I feel that sometime our city does not know just how important it is. The industry employs almost 30,000 people and contributes £1.3bn to our city and the surrounding region. Destination Bristol is a public/private sector partnership that works with a variety of organisations to build on this success.

We set out to attract more visitors to Bristol; encourage them to say for as long as possible and ensure they visit all of the region’s great attractions. Bristol has great potential to grow visitor numbers, and trends over recent years have been positive. Hopefully, this will continue as the city develops its international links and continues to promote itself as a friendly, creative and vibrant place.

Our website,, provides an ever-increasing collection of reasons why people visit our city. Central to this list are Bristol’s street art; the diversity of fabulous places to eat and a whole series of festivals that the city hosts throughout the summer.

These festivals are something for which Bristol is famous for. From St Paul’s Carnival and Pride to the Harbour Festival and Balloon Fiesta, the multitude of events happening across the city continues to attract visitors of all ages.

As we look to build on this success, we should welcome new visitor attractions such as Wild Place in late July and the new surf lake which is planned to open just before Christmas. This will be complemented by the Government’s recent announcement of the new Tourism Sector Deal which will raise the overall profile of tourism in the UK, and will hopefully have some direct benefits for Bristol over the coming years.

I look forward to encouraging more people who live in Bristol to develop a career in what is a fast-growing and rewarding sector. If you would like to know more about anything to do with a career in our industry or plans for the future of tourism, please do email me –

Thank you, and do enjoy Bristol!

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