Parking scores low on otherwise positive Windsor tourism report

Parking scores low on otherwise positive Windsor tourism report

Philip Dewey

Costs and ease of parking in Windsor were the blight of an otherwise successful tourism report, with the Royal Borough bringing in more than £472m last year.

A presentation on tourism figures for Windsor and the Royal Borough was made at the Visitor Management Forum yesterday.

Windsor attracted more than 7.5m visitors in 2013, with the majority of tourists coming from the UK and visiting the town during the day.

The majority of overseas visitors were from the USA with 60 per cent of tourists visiting the Royal Borough to see Windsor Castle,

Speaking at the forum meeting, Dr Parves Khan, head of research at Tourism South East, said: "Tourism has long been an important component for the borough as its home to many iconic attractions, especially Windsor Castle.

"We carried out a survey with a number of visitors to Windsor asking them to rate certain aspects of their visit from zero to five.

"It scored highly on atmosphere, welcome, open spaces, places to eat and drink, and cleanliness of streets. It was rated lowly for over-crowdedness, ease of parking and cost of parking."

Dr Khan added that the 80 per cent of tourism in Windsor was made up of the leisure and holiday market, with a lower ratio of business visitors compared to places like Reading and Guildford.

Forum chairwoman Cllr Eileen Quick (Con, Clewer East) said: “One of our major problems in Windsor is parking and traffic and it is something that is on our minds constantly.”

Windsor was the 21st most visited place in the UK in 2013, falling out of the top 20 for the first time in a number of years, but the Royal Borough was the 26th most visited local authority in the UK and was the most visited in Berkshire.

The meeting took place at the Norden Farm Centre for the Arts in Altwood Road, in Maidenhead.

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