A new visitor campaign has been launched as part of Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s Covid-19 recovery plan for the city.

The campaign has been designed to support the recovery of the tourism sector through the coronavirus, and forms part of the wider tourism marketing recovery activity across the city. It aims to encourage people to enjoy a ‘Stoke-cation’ over the summer holidays.

‘Stoke-cation’ is being led by Visit Stoke, the council’s Visitor Economy Team and will deliver a marketing campaign to remind residents of the city’s rich cultural tourism offer while encouraging visitors and residents to re-explore the city’s free and paid for attractions.

Working with tourism attractions across the city, the campaign will communicate re-opening messages so that visitors can feel safe and know what to do ahead of their visits. It will provide visitors with the reassurance they need to confidently revisit the city as more attractions start to re-open again over the summer break.

Campaign activities will include raising awareness of attractions across the city as part of a phased and gradual re-opening, co-ordination with partners to promote offers and incentives to visitors via the Visit Stoke website and via digital marketing channels, partnership marketing to encourage cross-promotion of attractions. Stoke-cation will also see a range of dedicated digital activities as well as a dedicated Stoke-cation landing page on Visit Stoke’s website – with social media links and directs through to special offer pages to encourage/incentivise visits while the MyStokeApp will also shortly have dedicated Stoke-cation information available for when people are on the move.

Partners are being urged to get behind the campaign with social media packs and marketing materials available for use across the city.

The campaign will also see the city council tourism team working with attractions to achieve the ‘We’re Good To Go’ industry standard and supporting mark which shows businesses are adhering to the respective Government and public health guidance, have carried out a COVID-19 risk assessment and checked that they have the required processes in place.

Councillor Abi Brown, leader of Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said: “Stoke-on-Trent has so much to offer and in today’s climate where the safety of everyone is of paramount priority we’re reminding people what we’re got right on our very own doorsteps. Stoke is really on the up but too often people can overlook what’s on offer locally and with thousands of jobs across the city reliant on tourism, it’s essential that we support businesses to get up and running in line with the changes in Government advice. This campaign reminds people that there’s never been a better time to opt for a ‘Stoke-cation’. From Trentham Gardens to World of Wedgwood to our beautiful parks, we want not only those who live in the city but visitors including friends and family who live slightly further afield to come and discover what’s here. It means people can support local businesses, enjoy safe and responsible tourism as well as having welcome days out without having to travel very far.

“We’re also working with attractions to encourage them to achieve the ‘We’re good to go’ industry mark so they can provide reassurance to people around their Stoke-cation that the correct procedures are in place. There’s a range of ways to get involved and I’m looking forward to seeing people’s stories being shared on-line with the new hashtag #Stokecation.”

Grant Mantle, Marketing Manager at the Trentham Estate said: “The Trentham Estate is ‘Good to Go’ and we have worked hard to ensure that visitors can enjoy a safe and relaxing day out, securing VisitEngland’s Industry Standard in the process. We are asking people to enjoy a ‘Stoke-cation’ this summer by making use of the wonderfully unique attractions in the area. Whilst guests may not get to enjoy a break on the continent this year, there is plenty to do at Trentham to give you that holiday feeling.”

Julie Woodward, Marketing Specialist at World of Wedgwood said: “We’re thrilled to have opened some areas of World of Wedgwood as part of our phased approach. We have implemented new measures to ensure safety and comfort for our visitors, staff and suppliers. These are outlined on our website and we will be displaying the VisitEngland “We’re Good to Go” industry standard to assure everyone of our commitment to safety and wellbeing.

“World of Wedgwood is delighted to be part of the Stoke-cation campaign – with so much culture, heritage, city life and surrounding countryside on the doorstep, why go anywhere else?”

More information on the campaign is available at: www.visitstoke.co.uk/stoke-cation.

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