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Published on : Wednesday, June 10, 2015
VisitEngland is celebrating 100 days to go until the Rugby World Cup 2015 and the launch of the Festival of Rugby 2015 with a consumer campaign to find the nation’s favourite sports destinations. The ‘Home of Sport’ campaign forms part of a year-long drive to highlight England’s fantastic sporting offer and the accompanying benefits for the tourism industry.
As part of the quest to find the country’s top sporting destinations, the national tourist board has asked the public to send in their own nominations. By submitting an image of their “home of sport” – be it Headingley or a hidden gem of a village cricket green – sports fans will help decide the jewel in England’s sporting crown, no mean feat in a country that is world-renowned for its sporting heritage.
To help find England’s sporting capital, participants can simply upload a picture of their own home of sport to Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #HomeOfSport with a snappy sentence on where it is, and why it’s the best sporting destination in England. Approved nominations will appear on a national sports wall at www.englandhomeofsport.com and will be entered into a prize draw to win a selection of sporting experiences.
England has a legacy of hosting world-class global sporting events from the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games to last year’s Grand Départ in Yorkshire and this year’s Tour de Yorkshire. The Rugby World Cup 2015 – a pan-England event, covering 10 host cities in England (as well as Cardiff) and 41 team bases across the country, provides another opportunity for England to showcase all that’s on offer on the world’s stage, with benefits set to reach all sectors. Earlier this year Ernst & Young (EY) on behalf of England Rugby 2015, Tournament Organisers, estimated the Tournament is set to generate a total output of £2.2billion to the UK economy.
Over 250,000 people are expected to attend local events as part of the Festival of Rugby from this week until October – but England’s summer of sport is not all about the rugby. The Peak District welcomes the world famous vintage cycle race, L’Eroica, from 19 – 21 June and there’s a host of other exciting events coming up, providing the industry with a fantastic opportunity to showcase all the great things England can offer sporting enthusiasts.
VisitEngland’s Chief Executive, James Berresford, says: As the birthplace of rugby, football, cricket, punting and the modern Olympic Games, the home of iconic venues such as Old Trafford, Wimbledon and Aintree, and the host to world-class sporting events – Henley Royal Regatta and the Americas Cup, to name just two – England’s sporting heritage is something that truly sets us apart from other destinations. Additionally, our green and pleasant land provides jaw-dropping backdrops to a whole host of popular pursuits, from hiking and running to abseiling and coasteering, making the search literally country-wide.”
James Berresford continues: “The ambition of this campaign is to capture the variety of England’s sporting offer, to showcase the related benefits and opportunities for the tourism industry and continue to build excitement and ahead of the arrival of Rugby World Cup in September.”
Tourism Minister Tracey Crouch said: “England is home to some of the world’s most loved and iconic sports. This brilliant campaign will show visitors the amazing range of English sporting venues, big and small, that form such an important and popular part of our national heritage.”
Earlier this year VisitEngland launched ‘Discover Your England’, a TV campaign aimed at raising the profile of English destinations ahead of the Rugby World Cup. Aired on Channel 5, ITV and Sky, it featured more than 16 destinations alongside the words of ‘Jerusalem’ – synonymous with English rugby, to encourage people to set out and explore what makes England special to them.”