Category: Tourism

Tourism has been a great success story for Plymouth, with a five per cent increase in visitors last year bringing total visitor numbers up from 5.1 to 5.4 million.

A further 500,000 visitors are expected to visit Britain’s Ocean City during 2020, as the city takes a leading role in the Mayflower 400 commemorations. 

The city’s annual tourism and visitor economy conference on 28 November 2019 will encourage local tourism businesses to make the most of the opportunities offered by Mayflower 400, with the overarching theme of the conference being ‘It’s all about the experience’.

High profile keynote speakers including Andrew Stokes, England Director at Visit Britain who leads on the development and delivery of the £40 million ‘Discover England Fund’, and Phil Gibby, the South West director of Arts Council England will share their perspectives on the ‘experience economy’ and how culture and digital is changing tourism globally.

Running from 10.30am to 4pm, the conference will be hosted at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Plymouth and delegates will hear from a variety of different speakers giving perspectives on how customers - and the experiences they are looking for – continue to change.

Amanda Lumley, Executive Director of Destination Plymouth, said: “This year’s conference takes place as the Mayflower 400 commemorative year officially begins with light-based festival Illuminate. It’s the perfect time to reflect on our exciting year of culture here in the city  and to explore in detail the opportunities that the commemorations will bring to businesses in Plymouth and the surrounding areas.

“Last year was especially successful for Plymouth’s tourism businesses with a five per cent growth in visitor numbers, and we hope to increase this even more during 2020.”

Other speakers include:

  • Adrian Vinken OBE, Chair of Mayflower 400
  • Charles Courtenay, Earl of Devon and patron of Mayflower 400
  • Richard Veal, Managing Director of Simpleview Europe, who will talk about digital futures
  • Ruth Powell, Regional Marketing Manager at Great Western Railway
  • Charles Hackett, Chief Executive of Mayflower 400, discussing the highlights of the national Mayflower programme

The conference is sponsored by City College Plymouth, Great Western Railway and Crowne Plaza Plymouth.  

Tickets cost £15 and include refreshments and a networking buffet lunch. Book online at



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