East of England attractions hoping hot summer sees return to pre-Covid levels

  • The hot weather finally arrived in the East of England, as Victoria Lampard reports.

Visitor attractions in the East of England have reported their busiest weekend of the year as a period of hot weather kickstarted the summer season.

In West Norfolk it reached 31°C on Sunday, as visitors flocked to the region's seaside resorts, while in Essex, Clacton Pier recorded its 2023 peak.

For tourism bosses there is optimism that as an expected sustained period of hot weather begins, visitor numbers could finally make a return to pre-Covid levels.

Pete Waters, executive director at Visit East of England, said: "2019 was a record for our visitor economy here in the East of England, which is worth £10bn, so it's vitally important that the visitor economy is doing well.

"We went through Covid and in the first year we had an over 50% drop in the visitor economy.

"That recovered the year after so we're hoping that this year we'll be back to those pre-2019 levels and break records."

Mr Waters said a summer of hot weather could result in more people having "staycations" in the East, particularly if they are struggling with the rising cost of living.

Temperatures jumped in the East of England over the weekend after a mild start to June. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Like Clacton-on-Sea, Great Yarmouth in Norfolk saw high visitor numbers over the weekend.

Isobelle Walker, at the Sweet Sensation ice cream and donut shop, said: "It's been nice and busy and it's good to see people back.

"We were a bit worried as it was a slow start to the year with the Easter bank holidays.

"Now the sun has decided to come out it's been good."

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