Northumberland Tourism would like to take fullest advantage of this publicity and has decided to make cycling a major thrust for its 2014 marketing campaign to attract many more cyclists to Northumberland for multi night visits and day trips.
The county's landscape and heritage is outstanding and the existing cycle route network provides an excellent basis to attract cycling visitors to Northumberland. The recreational cycling and cycle tourism offer in Northumberland has the potential to be exceptional but it needs a few appropriate interventions and changes to the status quo for this to happen.
Cycle Pad and Associates have been commissioned to evaluate the current offer and make recommendations how it can be improved by means of relatively low cost interventions in order to unlock the economic impact which cycle tourism always brings in its wake.
Northumberland can only take its place in this competitive market place on merit. Our aim is to attain 5* status for our cycling offer and the process to achieve this begins with this report.
This study reviews the current offer and makes recommendations what must be done to bring the offer not just up to standard but to a level that builds on its natural assets. These are its quiet roads, labyrinthine access network, amazing and widely varied scenery, expansive unspoilt landscapes, iconic landmarks and a wide range of heritage connections at every turn. These are the assets which could make Northumberland a magnet for recreational and touring cyclists – all with money to spend in local communities and glowing tales of the warm welcome they received but it will not happen by itself.
The work required to bring the infrastructure up to a consistent standard is not huge or costly but it does need doing commencing as soon as possible for 2014. Managing the network infrastructure is critical to maintain a quality experience.
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