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Tourism Business Support

Starting and growing a tourism business in Monmouthshire


Starting a new business can be a daunting prospect and sustainable business growth isn’t something that happens by chance. For help developing a business plan, handling your finances or ensuring compliance with legislation, visit Monmouthshire's business support website to access a wide range of relevant and regularly updated advice and guidance.

 

Tourism Development in Monmouthshire


For advice on planning - to find out whether planning permission is required for your proposed development or to access Monmouthshire’s pre-application planning service, visit the planning section of Monmouthshire County Council’s website.

The Destination Management Plan is the document which guides tourism development, management and marketing of the county. There is a new plan for the period 2017-2020 which is based on a review of performance over the last plan period, Monmouthshire's best prospects for growth and extensive consultation with stakeholders. The purpose of the Plan is to establish a clear framework for public, private and voluntary sector partnership working to address the identified priorities and deliver year round sustainable tourism growth to maximise the economic, social and environmental benefits of tourism across all parts of Monmouthshire.

Identified priorities for development include:

  • Serviced accommodation - upgrading and increasing capacity
  • Consolidation of the activity offer - especially walking and cycling
  • Broaden impact of Food Capital of Wales status, focussing on improvements to the everyday food & drink offer
  • Building on Monmouthshire's rich 'border country' heritage and incorporating a contemporary creative offer
  • Development of events that create year round added value to extend the season.

Monmouthshire 2017 Tourism Performance

Value of tourism to Monmouthshire's economy in 2017

This infographic shows Monmouthshire's tourism performance for 2017 (measured using STEAM (Scarborough Tourism Economic Activity Monitor). Download summary and full report.

% change for Monmouthshire compared with the SE Wales averages as below:

Economic impact (% change) 4.9% (4.7% South East Wales average)
Visitor numbers (% change) 1.1% (4.8% South East Wales average)
FTEs (% change) 2.5% (2.4% South East Wales average)
Spend per visitor day (% change) 2% - £66.14 spvd (0.1% - £56.57 spvd South East Wales average)

The % increase for Monmouthshire between 2016 and 2017 was above the regional average for economic impact and FTEs but below it for visitor numbers. Spend per visitor day (spvd) grew 2% in Monmouthshire between 2016 and 2017 (to £66.14) compared with 0.1% average growth for South East Wales (£55.57 spvd) showing that visitor yield grew more in Monmouthshire over this period compared with the regional average. FTEs and spend per visitor day between 2016 and 2017 also showed greater growth in Monmouthshire compared with the rural and urban Wales averages.

As this infographic shows, the lion’s share of the economic benefits of tourism come from staying visitors so growing these benefits requires continued development and expansion of Monmouthshire’s visitor accommodation supply.

Download Monmouthshire’s Accommodation Development Opportunities Report.

Growing the tourism benefits of walking


Walking is by far the most common activity on a day trip to the outdoors in Wales, with most consisting of a short walk (under 2 miles) or walking the dog. There are 611 promoted routes in Monmouthshire, including 10 long distance routes. These include the Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail and the Wales Coastal Path, plus a variety of locally managed routes. Most of the promoted routes are short walks to reflect the demand for this type of route.

Development of walking in Monmouthshire is guided by Monmouthshire's Walking Product Development Strategy.

If you're interested in developing or promoting a route in the county, you will find lots of useful information in our Walking Toolkit.

Growing the tourism benefits of cycling


The cycling market is now widely acknowledged as one of Wales’ most significant offers for tourism, benefiting from world class landscapes, heritage, attractions and facilities. According to the 2015 Great Britain Tourism Survey, cycling is worth £90 million to the Welsh economy through daily visits and overnight stays. Around 300,000 overnight visits to Wales each year involve cycling and/or mountain biking with an annual worth between £55 and £60 million.

Find out how to capitalise on the opportunities of this market by downloading the South East Wales Cycling Toolkit.

 

Developing a Sense of Monmouthshire


Developing, promoting and delivering a distinctive sense of place is the key to achieving sustainable tourism growth for the business and the destination.

For ideas on how to make sure your tourism experience reflects Monmouthshire’s unique culture and environment, have a look at our Sense of Monmouthshire Toolkit.

Download the Sense of Monmouthshire toolkit.

 

Developing successful events


Planning and managing events can be a challenging yet very rewarding process, which can lead to a whole range of positive outcomes for the individuals and organisations who host them and for the venues and locations in which they take place. However successful events do not happen by chance, they require careful and considered planning from start to finish.

Find out how to develop and manage successful events with our Events Management Toolkit.

Visitor Information

MCC Visitor Information


Take advantage of Monmouthshire’s Tourist Information Service, by introducing yourself / your business to our Tourist Information Centre staff. Make sure they are familiar with the visitor experience you offer so they feel confident about recommending it to visitors.

There are two staffed Tourist Information Centres in Monmouthshire (Abergavenny and Chepstow). Abergavenny Tourist Information Centre is operated by Brecon Beacons National Park Authority with financial support from Monmouthshire County Council and Abergavenny Town Council. Chepstow TIC is operated by Monmouthshire County Council directly with financial support from Chepstow Town Council.

Abergavenny TIC, The Tithe Barn, Monk Street, Abergavenny. NP7 5ND. 

Chepstow TIC, Bridge Street, Chepstow. NP16 5EY. 

Visitor information is also available at Shire Hall, Monmouth; Old Station, Tintern; Caldicot Castle; and Usk Rural Life Museum.

Visit Monmouthshire also sponsors a Welcome to Monmouthshire bedroom browser 

Monmouthshire also has a group of well-trained Ambassadors whose role it is to offer a warm welcome to visitors and give them ideas of things to see and do while they’re here to enhance their visit, prolong their stay and encourage repeat visits.

Brown and White Tourism Road Signs


It may seem simple to put up a sign for your business but there are road safety, quality and 'sign pollution' issues to assess before an application is approved. Your application will be judged against a range of eligibility criteria as well as against road safety and traffic management factors.

Brown and White signposting is not advertising. The signs are to help visitors find tourism facilities but too many signposts spoil the look and feel of an area, and can make it confusing and distracting for the driver.

To avoid this, we may refuse applications. In some cases applicants will be encouraged to take up shared traffic management signposting with other local facilities on the same route. With increased reliance by drivers on SatNav it is crucial for attractions and other tourism businesses to have correct postcode details on their website, and on Google.

To apply for Brown & White Tourism signs on Monmouthshire Highways you will need to complete the application form below and pay a £100 application fee. If successful you will then be responsible for the costs of design, construction and installation of the signs. Although the signs remain the property of Monmouthshire County Council, you will also be responsible for the cost of any maintenance or replacement of the signs.

For brown and white tourism signs on Monmouthshire County Council highways, please download Monmouthshire’s Brown & White Tourism policy and guidance below.

Download Monmouthshire’s Brown & White Tourism Signage policy and guidance

Download Brown & White Tourism Application Form

For tourism signs on trunk roads in Monmouthshire you will need to contact the South Wales Trunk Road Agency (SWTRA) directly - enquiries@southwales-tra.gov.uk

Download Welsh Government's Tourism Signage Guidance & Policy

Download Welsh Government's Tourism Signage Application Form

 

Marketing support


Monmouthshire’s destination website www.visitmonmouthshire.com is driven by one of Wales’ most comprehensive and up-to-date product databases (Wales Tourism Product Database) which also drives the www.visitwales.com website.

Check your business / attraction / event entry on this database by entering your business / attraction/ event name into the search facility on www.visitmonmouthshire.com. If you don’t already have an entry and would like one created, please email the following information to tourism@monmouthshire.gov.uk

  • Name and type of business (attraction / event)
  • Contact information (website, phone, email, address),
  • Long and short descriptions
  • Enticing images, ideally three at 300 x 225 size (don’t worry if the images are larger than this as we can resize)
  • Opening hours, pricing, dates open etc

If you already have an entry and just need to update or amend the information, please email the required amendments to tourism@monmouthshire.gov.uk

For information on entries showing on www.visitwales.com please see http://www.visitwales.com/working-with-us/faq

Image Gallery

To help with marketing we provide online image galleries (by Kiran Ridley) that are free to download and use for the purposes of promoting tourism in Monmouthshire. All we ask is that credit is given to Visit Monmouthshire.

The Visit Wales Image Library also offers an extensive collection of images, some of which are showcased on their website - www.walesonview.com. These can be requested for free from Visit Wales, and it is worth asking them if there are images you want but cannot see.

Add your own event to the website.

You can now add your own event to the Visit Monmouthshire website using our events form. We simply need to have the event venue on the website. If you cannot find your venue, please email tourism@monmouthshire.gov.uk with the venue name, full venue address and contact details. Once added, we will notify you.

 

Social Media


You can connect with Visit Monmouthshire on Social Media and spread your message further. Let us know if you've uploaded an event to Facebook and we'll add it to our calendar, or post on our page/tweet us and we can help promote your business to our fans.

Visit Monmouthshire Facebook

Visit Monmouthshire Twitter

 

Destination Marketing


Monmouthshire's destination marketing focusses on digital content marketing, underpinned by organic search and email to deliver leads and conversions for businesses in the UK consumer marketplace as well as opening up opportunities to overseas traffic, particularly in western Europe.

Our activity links with the thematic years approach of Visit Wales and their publicised content calendar.

2018 Visitor enewsletters
Easter 
Autumn
Halloween 

2018 Business enewsletters 
August 

Travel Trade, Group Travel & Business Tourism


Travel trade and group travel marketing activity is currently undertaken via participation in the Southern Wales marketing consortia.

A similar arrangement is in place for Business tourism as a member of a consortium with Newport City Council and Torfaen County Borough Council.

For facts and figures on Monmouthshire tourism, including the current Destination Management Plan, visit our Destination Intelligence page.

Join a local Tourism Association

ADTA logo

The Abergavenny and District Tourist Association (ADTA) was started 35 years ago and is a voluntary organisation working for and on behalf of the people and businesses of Abergavenny and the surrounding district. Our aim is to promote the town and surrounding area, encouraging visitors and helping to boost the local economy.

Currently ADTA has approx. 100 members comprising accommodation providers, attractions and activities, our wonderful restaurants and cafes and independent shops and businesses.

Each year we produce the Visit Abergavenny brochure. 45,000 copies are distributed nationally and locally. The brochure is the' go to 'guide for this area and it is one of the cheapest forms of advertising that you’ll find – great value for money. We also run a brochure launch and enable members to highlight their business at that event. ADTA still strongly believes that there is a real benefit to having something tangible for our visitors to have to help them plan their stay. Our hard working committee ensure that they have a local presence. We employ a distributor to deliver to a wider area. They go to Paddington Station, M4 services at Magor and Taunton Deane, and selected service stations on the M5, as well as many other outlets in various parts of the UK.

Alongside the brochure we have the www.visitabergavenny.co.uk website. Our web presence has become increasingly important and as such we decided to invest in a new website. This is performing extremely well and we are delighted by the increasing number of visitors to the site.

We organise free training events for our members in tourism education eg digital marketing and work closely with the staff at Abergavenny TIC and MCC. We have representatives attending Brecon Beacons Tourism meetings and ensure that we are involved in any organisations with relevance to our cause.

How much does it cost to join? For full membership – web and brochure entry it costs £100 for the year. For this, you have an entry in the visitabergavenny brochure and on the website. All contact details, 5 images, text and a link to your own website are included in your listing.

If any-one would like to chat about becoming a member, please contact one of ADTA’s Committee – Chair: Tracey Evans 01873 840207 or Secretary: Mary Davies 01873 853271 (info@visitabergavenny.co.uk) or any other committee member.

WVFDTA Logo

Whilst other organisations cover only some parts of the Wye Valley & Forest of Dean area, we think it is better promoted as one. We are a Visit England recognised Destination Management Organisation and the only body which promotes this cross-county, cross-country area to local, national and international visitors. By joining us, your business benefits but together we benefit the whole area.

We have about 300 members and our website, wyedeantourism.co.uk, lists nearly 400 tourism businesses covering accommodation, things to do and places to eat. It is the official website for the Forest of Dean & Wye Valley and has nearly 500,000 unique visits per year. Each member business has a profile listing page and a link to their own website.

Full details about joining, including rates and applications forms are on our website and for a good overview read 10 Reasons to Join Us. Alternatively contact us at info@wydeantourism.co.uk, 01594 888216 for more information.