The Department sponsors VisitBritain, which is charged with promoting Britain overseas, and VisitEngland, which is responsible for promoting England within the UK and to selected overseas markets. Funding is based on tourism destinations rather than apportioned on a regional basis, but is intended to ensure that tourism assets and destinations receive coverage in national marketing campaigns.
The Government also recently announced a major initiative to support both international and domestic tourism promotion. Including money from the GREAT campaign and private sector support, VisitBritain is investing over £120 million in an international marketing programme. Over the next four years, this is expected to deliver 4.6 million extra visitors from overseas, £2.27 billion in extra visitor spend and over 50,000 job opportunities. VisitEngland's domestic tourism campaign is supported by a £5 million investment from the Olympic budget and is expected to deliver up to 12,500 new job opportunities and £500 million in extra visitor spend over four years. This promotion includes an invitation to the industry to join up in a 20.12% discount or special offer incentive for consumers.
In addition, the Regional Growth Fund Project, ‘Growing Tourism Locally’, which is managed and co-ordinated by the National Tourist Board, VisitEngland, aims to stimulate increased visitor spend across England, particularly in areas that are facing challenging economic times, but which have tourism growth potential. VisitEngland is also working with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and Natural England on rural economic growth, in particular, opportunities made available for tourism through the Rural Development Programme for England.