Visits to attractions


The national visitor attractions report for 2018 includes results for 27 visitor attractions in the Lancashire-14 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. The local results are therefore of only limited value, but of the 27 Lancashire attractions that submitted results, four attractions recorded little or no change in visitor numbers, 14 others saw visitor numbers increase and eight more recorded decreases. A value could not be calculated for the change at the other attraction, which reappeared in the list after a year's absence.

The size of attractions ranged from the Harris Museum and Art Gallery in Preston and the Sandcastle Water Park in Blackpool with 300,000 visitors or more, to the 82 who visited the British in India museum in Nelson.

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 2019/20 season. Of these particular sites, Lancaster Castle Museum attracted the largest number of visitors, around 20,000 more than Gawthorpe Hall which experienced a small fall in visits. The closure of five museums as part of the 2015 Budget Review, taking effect in October 2016, has caused falls in attendances at most of the affected sites, but three (the Queen Street Mill, the Judges' Lodgings and the Helmshore Mills) have recovered following a limited reopening in April 2018. Some fluctuations in numbers were caused by temporary closures or recovery from periods of closure in previous years. The total number of visits to all sites fell by a considerable 32%.

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 2018 and 2019/20 (PDF 483 KB)

Page updated May 2020