Visits to attractions


The national visitor attractions report for 2020 includes results for just 12 visitor attractions in the Lancashire-12 area. Only a small number of tourism attractions in Lancashire submit visitor figures for publication and some, like country parks, have to give estimations of their large numbers of visitors. Nearly twice as many were listed in 2019, so clearly there has been a major impact on the tourism industry from the Covid-19 pandemic. The local results are therefore of only limited value, but of the 12 Lancashire attractions that submitted results one attraction recorded no change in visitor numbers, one other saw visitor numbers increase while the others recorded decreases which ranged from -38% to -92%. There was no data available for the number of visitors to the East Lancashire Railway in 2019, but the figures have been generally around 200,000, so we have calculated an approximate percentage change.

The size of attractions ranged from Worden Park in South Ribble estimated at 300,000 visitors, to the 50 estimated at the Woodend Colliery mining museum.

This article also includes a separate table that shows visitor numbers at eight sites originally managed by the Lancashire Museums Service during the more recent 2021/22 season which still cannot be compared with previous years while recovering from the forced closures necessitated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Most of the sites reopened in May 2021 but two, Helmshore Mill and Lancashire Conservation Studios, were open from April. The Museum of Lancashire did not reopen until September and Lancaster Castle until October although the latter had most visits of all the sites at over 17,000. The Clitheroe Castle Museum was visited by 12,421 people. The third highest total, just below this at 12,309, was at Gawthorpe Hall. The grand total was 62,503, up a monumental 1,731.3% on 2020/21, but still only about a half of the 2019/20 figure.

The 2 tables are in the 'Further analysis' document which can be downloaded below and have also been incorporated into the Microsoft Power BI slides seen here. The other slides are the interactive map of the attractions listed in the Visit England survey, an interactive pie-chart which displays the results by category and district and an interactive map of the museums, which can be set for any of the financial years back to 2011/12. The 2 tables are also interactive, in that by clicking the column headers the table is sorted or ranked by that indicator, and Table 2 is supplemented by a time series chart which can be filtered by the relevant authority. 

Further analysis

Visitor attendance in Lancashire 2020 and 2021/22 (PDF 196 KB)

Page updated June 2022