Plans to get millions more to visit the county

    Visit Kent Chairman Jonathan Neame with Visit Kent CEO Sandra Matthews-Marsh MBE

    VISIT Kent has unveiled ambitious plans to grow Kent’s visitor economy by a further five million tourists by 2021.

    On December 5, Visit Kent chairman Jonathan Neame laid out the organisation’s vision for the next five years to a gathering of key investors and partners in Canterbury.

    The announcement came days after the news that a record 60.6 million visitors came to The Garden of England in 2015 – with economic benefits from rising tourism increasing by 50 per cent over the past decade.

    Jonathan Neame said: “Kent’s visitor economy is in a strong position, having grown significantly and steadily over the last decade, welcoming more people, supporting more jobs and bringing more money to the county than ever before.

    “However, we are not complacent. With the support of our public and private sector partners and leading stakeholders, including Kent County Council, we have great ambitions for the future of Kent’s visitor economy.”

    He added the aim of attracting an additional five million visitors to Kent in the next five years would create an additional 5,000 jobs for the county and generate more than £300 million.

    Earlier this month, independent research commissioned by Visit Kent revealed that Kent’s visitor economy topped £3.6billion for the first time ever in 2015, welcoming a record number of domestic and overseas visitors and supporting 72,000 jobs.