Tourism chiefs are turning to the county’s literary heroes to pull in American visitors as part of a multimillion pound initiative.
Nottinghamshire is set to lead a new project to attract more tourists from the US to the area in partnership with Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature, Visit Hampshire and Shakespeare’s England.
The project, called ‘Creating England’s Literary Greats’, is one of a number of successful bids to secure funding from The £40 million Discover England Fund, administered by VisitEngland.
Focusing on the US travel trade, the project aims to explore the demand for increased literary themed visits to England, introducing new ideas for itineraries and presenting them to US tour operators to sell in their programmes.
Brendan Moffett, chief executive of Visit Nottinghamshire said: “This is fantastic news for Nottinghamshire and we’re thrilled to have been awarded this opportunity to test the market to see if there’s an appetite for US tourists to explore our literary legends and their attractions, including DH Lawrence Birthplace Museum and Newstead Abbey.
“The concept behind the project is based on research from VisitBritain, which has found that more than a third of overseas visitors want to see places from film and literature, and that almost half visited museums, art galleries, castles or historic houses – demonstrating the significance of the UK’s heritage and culture.
“As part of this project, additional research will be commissioned to test if there is a real market for more literary themed visits, and we plan on making the most of this opportunity for Nottinghamshire to learn from experts in this field such as the Shakespeare’s Birthplace Museum and Jane Austen’s House Museum.”
As a UNESCO City of Literature, Nottingham is committed to promoting its literary history on a global stage, including working to attract literary tourism to the city and inspiring people to enjoy reading and writing.
Sandeep Mahal, director of Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature, said: “Nottingham is truly blessed with our literary credentials and we see this project as a real opportunity for tourism operators to create and deliver literary tourism experiences that set us apart from our competitor destinations. This project will help shine a light on our literary tourism potential.”