The Member of Parliament for North Wiltshire, James Gray, joined the unveiling of the new Great West Way branded Calne Town welcome signs to shine a spotlight on the local area’s tourism industry, in a week devoted to travel and exploration during English Tourism Week.

Now in its eighth year, English Tourism week raises the profile and showcases the benefits of the tourism industry to local communities and the economy.

Tourism is one of England’s largest and most valuable industries. English tourism directly employ more than 2.6 million people and generate over £106 billion a year for the British economy. Locally, the South West region welcomed 2.6 million visitors, with these visitors spending £1.2 billion in 2017.

After attending the event in Calne, James Gray MP said:

“I was very pleased to be able to support English Tourism Week and understand more about ‘The Great West Way,’ a fantastic initiative which offers an extraordinary variety of English experiences not found in any other part of the country. From its lively market towns and rolling open scenery to stately homes, North Wiltshire is a wonderful destination to visit. I am therefore pleased that through projects such as these we can inspire more people to visit and boost its profile.”

The Great West Way directors also gave James Gray a briefing at the Lansdowne Hotel in Calne about the route which is set to transform tourism in this area. The Great West Way is a new touring route between London and Bristol. It hopes to attract visitors from around the world and the UK by allowing people to explore and uncover the essence of England.

VisitEngland Director Andrew Stokes said:

“English Tourism Week is a fantastic opportunity to should about the many hidden gems that England has to offer. Whether it is the contemporary culture in our vibrant cities, our countryside’s beautiful landscapes or our seaside destinations there is so much to see and do and we want as many businesses and people to get involved as possible.”