Visitor numbers to North Kesteven continue to rise says national survey as district strives to develop as a tourist destination

Artist in residence Nicki Jarvis outside Mrs Smith's Cottage at Navenby during Heritage Open days weekend. It is undergoing restoration and will open next year.
Artist in residence Nicki Jarvis outside Mrs Smith's Cottage at Navenby during Heritage Open days weekend. It is undergoing restoration and will open next year.

The district at the ‘Heart of Lincolnshire’ continues to prove popular with visitors according to new tourism figures, which show that around 2.8 million people visited North Kesteven in 2018.

This is an increase of almost nine per cent on an already impressive 2017, showing a reassuring trend that more and more people are opting for a 'staycation' in the district for all it has to offer.

Millers at work at one of Sleaford's historic attractions - Cogglesford Watermill.

Millers at work at one of Sleaford's historic attractions - Cogglesford Watermill.

Visitors spent a total of 3.3 million days in the North Kesteven, an increase of eight per cent on the previous year.

The good news continues for many of the district’s businesses as tourism spend increased by 11 per cent, growing to over £151 million spent in North Kesteven by visitors in 2018.

The tourism increase also equates to 2,080 full time jobs in North Kesteven, a 7.6 per cent increase on 2017.

The nationally recognised STEAM figures, produced by Global Tourism have shown a healthy increase over several years, highlighting the continued commitment to tourism shown by North Kesteven District Council.

The Heart of Lincs logo.

The Heart of Lincs logo.

Council Leader Richard Wright said: “It is very encouraging to see the continued upward trend in tourism in North Kesteven, and the positive impact it brings with it.

“An increase in visitors means that more money is being spent locally, which in turn leads to healthier local businesses, more jobs and an overall boost to the economy in the district.

“We know that North Kesteven is a fantastic place to live, work and visit and it’s pleasing to see this confirmed by these latest STEAM figures.

“North Kesteven has a proud aviation heritage, and the International Bomber Command Centre continues to be a great success, hosting events that have attracted people from all over the country.

“We also have strong historical and rural connections too, and visitor sites such as Cogglesford Mill and Mrs Smith’s Cottage continue to be popular with visitors.

“Next year will be an important time for Mrs Smith’s Cottage as the restoration will be completed and a new visitors’ centre will be open, offering visitors a real trip back in time.

“We’ve also recently launched our new tourism brand ‘Heart of Lincs’ that will showcase all the great things our district has to offer. Our vision is that it will become the ‘go to’ place for anyone wanting to find out more about North Kesteven.”