Visits to attractions
The national visitor attractions report for 2022 includes results for just 18 visitor attractions in the Lancashire-12 area and 2 more in Blackburn with Darwen, one of the unitary authorities that complete the Lancashire-14 area. In 2022 there were no figures provided for any visitor attractions in Blackpool, which clearly has many popular attractions. 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. There were 20 attractions listed in 2019, so there has been some recovery in the tourism industry following the Covid-19 pandemic. The local results are therefore of only limited value, but of the 20 Lancashire attractions that submitted results one attraction recorded no change in visitor numbers and sixteen saw visitor numbers increase from 2021 with quite a few improving by more than 200%. Compared to 2019 five recorded decreases which ranged from -12% to -70% and seven recorded increases ranging from +3% to +367%. There was no data available for the number of visitors to some attractions in both preceding years shown so their percentage changes cannot be calculated.
The size of attractions ranged from Worden Park in South Ribble where 300,000 visitors were estimated, the Martin Mere Wetland Centre in West Lancashire and Longton Brickcroft Nature Reserve in South Ribble, both with around 140,000 visitors, to the 245 counted at the Slaidburn Archives in Ribble Valley.
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 2022/23 season. Before 2018 there were 12 sites, but a budget review in 2015 began a process of transferring control or closure. Major repair work at some sites and the Covid-19 pandemic then caused further closures. The Fleetwood Museum is one attraction that was previously run by the Lancashire Museums Service, but now appears in Table 1 independently.
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.
Page updated August 2023