Make It York reports on its first year and reveals future plans

Make It York reports on its first year and reveals future plans

York’s destination management organisation, Make It York, is celebrating a successful first 12 months.

Managing director Steve Brown will address shareholders today to update them on progress made and reveal new campaigns and initiatives for the coming year.

One year ago, Make It York was created to improve the economic well-being of the city and bring together work by Visit York, Science City York (SCY) and teams from City of York Council.

Jane Lady Gibson, chair of Make It York, said: “Our purpose, working collaboratively with businesses, is to develop and promote York – nationally and internationally - as a vibrant and attractive place. 

“One year on, I am pleased that feedback so far has been positive and that our colleagues and stakeholders can point to examples of how we have created new opportunities.”

Over the past year the city has successfully established a ‘Business Improvement District’ (BID), which has the full backing of Make It York.

Andrew Lowson, BID executive director, said: “Through consultation, businesses have already stated where they want improvements and we’ll be learning from other successful UK BIDS.  

“We want a city centre that is competitive whilst pleasant to live in; working collaboratively with Make it York will be crucial in making the right decisions for businesses in York.”

Make It York will announce today that it has been a successful year for business, as the business team have supported over 400 individual businesses with help, advice and access to over £398,000 of investment.

York tourism has also been enjoying a successful period, over the last three years an estimated £60m incremental spend for York has been achieved through the Growing Tourism Locally initiative, led through the Visit York brand and in partnership with VisitEngland. 

New festivals and events were also brought to the city for the first time such as the hugely popular Great Yorkshire Fringe in July, a new Easter Festival and an extended York St Nicholas Christmas Festival.

Today, audiences will hear that the aim to achieve a £1bn tourism sector for York by 2024 is on track, and a 12 month campaign to market the North of England in key international markets is expected to pay dividends this year too. 

Steve Brown will look forward to the next year, demonstrating progress in turning around the Shambles Market, delivering a proactive inward investment plan, and working more closely and constructively with York’s small businesses.

He will also discuss plans to deliver a first-class Venturefest Yorkshire event in November and a highly successful Culture Awards in December.