27 per cent rise in tourists to county
THERE has been a 27 per cent growth in tourist numbers in County Wexford since 2013, according to newly-released figures.
The research by Failte Ireland showed that the income from tourism grew by a fifth over the same period.
The latest data relates to 2015 when some 221,000 overseas tourists visited the county with an economic impact of €65 million.
This is in addition to more than 679,000 domestic tourists visiting Wexford, bringing in €140 million to the county, which is ranked as the fifth most popular county in Ireland within the domestic visitor market and 12th for the international visitor market.
Within the international market, visitor numbers to Wexford declined by 8,000, however, revenue from the sector has increased by €5 million.
The entire Southeast region (Carlow, Tipperary South, Waterford, Kilkenny and Wexford) attracted 2,194,000 visitors in 2015, with Wexford accounting for 41 per cent of the total number of visitors to the region.
The total revenue earned by the Southeast region in 2015 from overseas and domestic visitors is €506 million, Wexford earned 40 per cent of this revenue at €205 million.
County Council chief executive Tom Enright said investment in the Wexford toursim sector is paying dividends for the county
'It is fantastic to see Wexford's tourism industry really thriving,' he said.
'In 2010 the overseas tourism visitor numbers to the entire Southeast region was 685,000 with a revenue impact of €175 million; in 2015 the county of Wexford alone achieved a total of 900,000 visitors with a revenue impact of €205 million - this type of growth is to be commended,' said Mr Enright.
'We view the tourism sector as a very important area of economic growth for Wexford and we have invested heavily in terms of the product and the promotion of Wexford over the last number of years in particular. Future strategic plans by ourselves and other key stakeholders will see further investment in tourism infrastructure as a generator of growth, with significant capital investment committed to the development of Johnstown Castle and the Norman Way,' said Mr Enright.
He said development plans are also in place for a number of Wexford Greenways along with important public realm enhancements for Enniscorthy and Wexford towns, building a strong visitor friendly atmosphere.
Colm Neville, Chair of Visit Wexford Tourism, said it is great to see our commitment to working with Failte Ireland, along with the investment in a dedicated marketing and PR campaign for Wexford, coming to bear fruit.
'Visit Wexford is having a great impact on decisions made by consumers within the very important domestic tourism market and we plan to ensure the same consumer decisions include Wexford within the international visitor market in the future,' he said.