The latest figures from New West End Company, which represents 600 retail, restaurant, hotel and property owners across Bond Street, Oxford Street, Regent Street and Mayfair, forecast that sales over the Jubilee weekend (2nd - 5th June) will hit £80 million.
West End Set For £80 Million Injection Over The Jubilee Weekend
This new research predicts that the four-day bank holiday weekend is expected to draw in 2.6 million domestic and international visitors to the Capital, kick-starting the UK’s tourism recovery, as the nation prepares for its first restriction-free summer.
With just a week to go until the extended bank holiday, New West End Company is encouraging international visitors to come and enjoy the unique event in London’s West End.
Dee Corsi, New West End Company New said: “Alongside high streets across the country, London’s West End will be transforming itself in the coming days. With street parties, pageants and Her Majesty’s birthday parade, retail and hospitality businesses across the West End are gearing up to celebrate this special moment in British history with family-friendly activities on offer, alongside Royal-inspired menus in our district’s famous restaurants. Uniquely British events, such as the Queen’s Jubilees or Royal Weddings, are a boom for high streets across the UK, with revellers coming out in force to eat, drink and shop over the long weekend."
“We strongly encourage the Great British public to come out, support their high streets and enjoy everything London has to offer as we celebrate Her Majesty’s historic reign.”
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I am delighted that our great city is once again welcoming visitors from around the world and there is no doubt that the Jubilee weekend will be one of the highlights of the summer. There are incredible events and festivities planned across the capital and of course the West End will be at the heart of the action.
“Our tourism industry was hit hard by the pandemic but will be vital in our economic recovery, as we build a better London for everyone. This is one of the reasons I travelled to America earlier this month to launch my £10m ‘Let’s Do London’ campaign - the largest international tourism campaign the city has ever seen to attract global visitors back to London."
“The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is a never-before-seen event, with London at the heart of the celebrations. London is open and ready to welcome the world once again in this special Jubilee year.”
Despite the large turnout expected over the Jubilee weekend and domestic footfall steadily increasing, New West End Company is turning to the Government to ask for more support to help entice overseas holidaymakers back to British shores, a group that historically contributes a vast amount to the wider economy.
Top of its requests are a simplification of the UK’s visitor visa system, which has fallen behind those offered by competing destinations such as Paris and Milan, and a reconsideration of the abolition of tax-free shopping. Since its abolition last year, other major world cities have benefited from a 20 per cent price advantage over the UK, pushing it even further down the travel wish list for high-net-worth tourists.
New West End Company is also asking for an extension to Sunday trading hours. International shoppers are often disappointed to find that stores are forced to close by 6pm on a Sunday, limiting potential spending. According to its own research, removing this barrier from the designated international centres of the West End and Knightsbridge would generate an additional £250 million worth of sales annually at no extra cost.
Corsi adds: “The long term recovery of the West End is on track, but for us to succeed long-term we need to ensure that the nation’s high street and the wider country remains globally competitive. There are simple routes to achieving this - exploring a simplified visa process, reintroducing tax-free shopping and extending Sunday trading hours.
“We’re in good stead to build back better, but we must clear a path if we want tourists - who generate an estimated £237 billion across the UK every year and support one in eight London jobs - to flock back to our high streets.”
As the West End prepares to welcome overseas visitors, The Mayor of London - Sadiq Khan - was recently in New York's Times Square to launch the $12.5 million "Let's Do London" campaign, welcoming back US tourists. The celebrations also align with the opening of the Elizabeth Line earlier this week, set to bring a £400 million boost to our West End recovery and increase London’s transport capacity by 10%.
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