Press Release – Tourism in Skipton needs a ‘Yes’ Vote

The Visit Skipton brand is the first port of call for many people when they are looking online for reasons to come to the town.

Stephen Garnett Photography

Attracting more than 20,000 unique visitors to the Welcome to Skipton website every month – most of whom view at least three pages – it is regarded as the most important medium for promoting the town nationally and globally.

It was set up and is funded by Skipton BID – and a no vote for BID renewal in January could mean it would completely disappear.

“The Visit Skipton brand would certainly be vulnerable,” said BID manager Geraldine Thompson.

The site offers free listings for all BID levy payers free of charge, as well as for events that promote Skipton.

It is one of the highest-ranking sites for Google searches for Skipton.

Geraldine said: “Over the past five years, Skipton BID and Skipton Town Council have together developed Visit Skipton into a regionally and nationally recognised destination brand.

“The Welcome to Skipton website is a hugely important part of that branding, but it also includes many promotional and marketing initiatives.

“Skipton BID invests substantially into promoting and marketing our town both regionally and nationally.

“And in partnership with other organisations, it funds representation of Skipton at key tourism, leisure and group travel events around the country, helping to ensure the town stays on the radar for coach operators and group travel organisers.”

She said that although some people might say the visitors will come anyway, without the support the BID, it could well fall behind other towns where BIDs were setting up new promotional initiatives.

“If Skipton doesn’t continue to sing its own praises, no one else is going to do it for us,” she said.

If renewed, Visit Skipton is one of the three key tenets of the Skipton BID business plan for the next five years.

Investment of £300,000 will go towards developing and improving the Visit Skipton brand, including redeveloping the Visit Skipton website as the key source of information for visitors, developing and enhancing its presence on social media, and looking at further promotion of Skipton on an international level.

It would also be used to develop and enhance the wide range of festivals Skipton offers over the year, including the possibility of expanding Sheep Day from a one-day event to a week-long festival.