Visit England’s Growing Tourism Locally campaign generated £109m worth of additional tourism spend in the region over the period, supporting 2,043 jobs.
Delivered by NewcastleGateshead Initiative, Northumberland Tourism and Visit County Durham, a series of domestic marketing campaigns between 2012 and 2015 aimed to inspire UK residents to take more holidays in the North East.
Funded by the government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF), activity included advertising in national and regional print publications, broadcast media, digital media and outdoor advertising - highlighting the very best of the region’s visitor offer.
RGF funding was matched with private sector funding and the three organisations each worked with key partners and tourism organisations in the region to deliver maximum return on investment for their campaigns.
Michelle Gorman, managing director at Visit County Durham, said: “These fantastic results are testament not only to the strength of the region’s tourism offer, but also to the way in which our tourism industry came together to work in partnership.
“Many Durham businesses took up the opportunity to be part of, and benefit from, the county’s biggest ever marketing campaign.
“And this partnership continues, with further national marketing campaigns for Durham planned for 2016 which will build upon this success.”
Lady Cobham CBE, chairman of VisitEngland Advisory Board, added: “It is fantastic to see the results of the Growing Tourism Locally campaign which is aimed at driving growth, by encouraging Brits to book a short break at home in one of the many wonderful destinations on offer across England.
“The results speak for themselves. A brilliant result; promoting England as a world-class holiday destination.”
Total annual visitor figures for the North East show that 64 million visits generated a total of £3.9bn expenditure, supporting a total of 55,000 jobs in the region in 2014 (latest available figures).