Welsh Government to spend £60m on improving tourism industry

The Welsh Government plans to spend £60m on improving the tourism industry.

A five-year plan aims to attract more visitors by improving "high-quality, year-round experiences," and developing "cultural, business and sporting events."

There have been record numbers of UK visitors to Wales over the last five years, according to the Welsh Government.

The tourism action plan will be launched in Porthcawl, Bridgend. Credit: PA Images

First Minister Mark Drakeford will launch 'Welcome to Wales' from the newly opened Rest Bay Watersports Centre, Porthcawl, a 'Visit Wales' tourist attraction scheme.

Launching the scheme, he said: “Over the past decade, tourism in Wales has been transformed, but there’s room for further growth in our visitor economy and we want to support that.

“We want to develop high-quality, year-round experiences, which are good for visitors and host communities. Sustainable growth can deliver health, environmental and cultural benefits by protecting and promoting our strengths.

“There are challenges facing the industry, including from Brexit. We believe the best response is to continue with our core business – to recognise tourism’s ongoing potential to act as a bedrock for the Welsh economy in projecting a positive message of and from Wales.”

The Welsh Government plans to develop sporting events in Wales. Credit: PA Images

Nearly one in ten people in Wales work in tourism, according to the Welsh Government.

It claimed tourism is on track to meet the 10 per cent growth target set seven years ago.

It said the value of domestic tourism grew by 14 per cent last year.

Ben Clifford runs surfing lessons for people living with a disability at Surfability, based in The Mumbles, Swansea.

He said it is vital that Wales' tourist attractions are accessible.

A sunflower field in Rhossili, Gower, saw a spike in visitors in 2018. Credit: Twitter: Steve Liddiard

The main actions over the next five years include:

  • A £10m investment in tourism infrastructure

  • £50m to help finance reputation capital investment projects

  • Develop, grow and attract cultural, business and sporting events

  • Developing products and experiences that reflect Wales’ "stand-out strengths as a country"

  • Growing off-peak tourism, encouraging people to spend more money and spreading the benefit of tourism

  • Two new "themed years" will be announced for 2022 and 2024.