Make It York

Highlights from Visit York Tourism Conference 2022

(Thursday 13 January 2022) The virtual Visit York Tourism Conference event opened this morning to 264 delegates, with this year’s theme exploring ‘tourism in a post-pandemic world’. Make It York’s Managing Director, Sarah Loftus, opened proceedings by asking ‘What kind of Tourism do we what for York’? We must think big, be ambitious and build on the strength York has achieved to date. We have the ability to build something very special as, after all we have been voted the best City in the UK.” 

After a challenging 22 months for the tourism industry, Sarah Loftus shared a six minute showreel to highlight the key milestones achieved by Visit York and their members during the pandemic. Visit York have supported over 850 members in 2021/22 to date, with a 94% retention rate. In 2019, York attracted 8.4 million visitors who spent £909 million and supported 28,400 jobs. The overarching message from Make It York is “our goal is to work collaboratively to drive York’s visitor economy forwards… and get back to these pre-Covid figures”. 

Introduced by BBC Look North’s Clare Frisby, Richard Nicholls, Head of Research and Forecasting at VisitBritain, was the first guest speaker to present to VYCON delegates. Richard focused on ‘Inbound tourism prospects and trends’ and opened his presentation with some insights on the effect Omicron has had on inbound international flight bookings: “You can see here very clearly the impact of Omicron. Back in October, early November, the inbound flight bookings had started to recover. This chart here shows flight bookings in each week, indexed to 2 years before, the pre-Covid norm, and that was back up to about –40% or so at the high point last Autumn. 40% below what we would see at normal levels. You can see it plunge down to -83% just before Christmas. It just started to pick up slightly in the week post-Christmas… and we hope that will be a sign of an improvement in the booking situation as we head into 2022.” 

Richard Nicholls also shared some research from tourism economics who are “forecasting it will take until 2025, before we surpassed the 2019 levels of inbound tourism, either volume or in this case, value. And bear in mind that there’s going to be inflation over this period, perhaps if you adjust for inflation, it might take a little bit longer still, so a slow build back.” 

In Autumn 2020, Make it York commissioned Group NAO to elaborate on how York’s visitor economy could ‘build back better’ post pandemic. Peter Rømer Hansen talked delegates through their “5 dogmas for the new visitor economy: the city belongs to the citizens, growth in visitor numbers is not a goal in itself, tourism can be a regenerative resource, leadership needed and tourism is a fluid concept”. 

Peter Rømer Hansen also shared the five key messages that came from their discussions with key stakeholders in York: “We need a grand plan for urban development and the role of tourism connecting the dots of a thriving city, let’s maintain a strong connection with the locals who have rediscovered the city centre during COVID, we need leadership to become a sustainable destination, all in on culture! – and not just heritage – is a broadly shared aspiration and finally, we have a lot of things going, perhaps also a bit of complacency.” 

The full report from Group NAO, ‘Y Tourism?’, which explores what kind of tourism York wants in the future – and how can the visitor economy make York a better city can be found here. 

Finally, Aileen Crawford, Head of Tourism & Conventions at Glasgow Convention Bureau, discussed how Glasgow has grown their business tourism in line with the city’s sustainable strategy: “Back in 2016, we realised that the fastest growing key sector for our conference world was in low-carbon and energy related conferences. So we were looking to see how we could match the city story and convention bureau support to attract more low carbon and energy related conferences. In 2019, our last full year of conference business, you can see that we hosted 25 conferences in this key theme and that attracted over 11,500 delegates worth £8.5 million to the local economy from delegate spend.”  

Aileen also touched upon the demand for more sustainable tourism: “Just looking for searches in your own city, you can see that TripAdvisor, Conde Nast, Expedia, allow green searches to come on board. And you can see that that is driven by the customer, driven by the guests, wanting to stay in your hotels and wanting to come to our cities for meetings. We noticed that the Glasgow Convention Bureau website, we have implemented a search for green accredited venues and hotels, that search went up by 150% in 2021.” 

Clare Frisby then chaired the Talking Heads panel, with Castle Howard’s Abbi Ollive, York BID’s Andrew Lowson, Galtres Lodge’s Rebecca Hill and LNER’s Kate McFerran. All panellists said they were optimistic for York’s future, with Abbi Ollive sharing that Castle Howard has “just come out of the back of a record-breaking Christmas… bigger and better than 2019” and that by “pre-ticketing some of our big events and phasing the entry, the visitor experience goes up”. 

Andrew Lowson from York BID started off with some positive stats from York’s footfall data: “if you look at this December just gone and compare it with December 2019, before the pandemic, York was only 5% down in terms of its footfall and that was compared to the UK average of –22% down”. Andrew also addressed the “myth that local people don’t use York city centre”, as data shows that 30% of those who used the city centre in December 2021 were residents (residing inside the outer ring-road) and last summer, in the height of the tourism season between July and September, 26% of spend came from local people. 

York has recovered well from the loss of international travellers, with Galtres Lodge’s Rebecca Hill citing that “what we’ve lost has been replaced with other markets – residents, locals, a bit further afield staycationers in the hotels… Aside from a few (businesses) who have said yes international is a really big draw for us, the majority have said yes whilst there has been a decline from that market it has been replaced, sometimes over and above, by other markets.” 

Headline sponsors LNER’s Kate McFerran said they brought “around half a million people into York last year” and that leisure has led their recovery to the extent that when they reached November/December 2021, they had reached 92.3% of their pre-Covid figures.  

Make It York’s Chair, Greg Dyke, closed the conference by recognising how “devastating” the pandemic was initially for the tourism industry and well done to York’s businesses for surviving it. Greg Dyke also commented on “how increasingly important sustainability is going to be to the tourism industry. If we want the tourists of the future, we will have to demonstrate that York is a green city and the plan to make York and North Yorkshire carbon neutral as soon as possible, I think is important to all our businesses”.  

All slides and presentations from VYCON22 can be found here. 

Notes to editors: 

VYCON22 is a Make It York event, supported by headline sponsors LNER. The event is also sponsored by fidomoney, Golden Tours, Deans Computer Services Ltd and YorkMix Radio.  

For further information please contact:  

Sarah Foster and Brittany Guymer – Communications team at Make It York 

Email: comms@makeityork.com   

About Make It York 

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, festivals and events and culture.  

Visit York is a part of Make It York and is the leisure tourism brand  

Under the brand Visit York, Make It York’s aim is to market York as a must-see world-class destination to the leisure visitor and ensure investment to develop the quality of tourism in York. 

About the Speakers 

Richard Nicholls, Head of Research and Forecasting at VisitBritain 

Richard Nicholls joined VisitBritain in 2015 as Head of Research and Forecasting. He and his team are responsible for analysis of inbound tourism data, insights and prospects both for VisitBritain and for the benefit of the wider UK tourism industry. 

Signe Jungersted and Peter Rømer Hansen, Founding Partners at Group NAO 

Signe Jungersted and Peter Rømer Hansen are founding partners in innovation and strategy agency Group NAO. Group NAO works with strategic transformation and innovation within the experience and visitor economy. Recent projects include 101sustainableideas.com with Gothenburg, Power of Community series with European Cities Marketing, ‘Tourism Taxes by Design’ and ‘Time for DMOcracy’ as multi-client projects. 

Aileen Crawford, Head of Tourism & Conventions at Glasgow Convention Bureau  

Aileen is Head of Tourism & Conventions at the award-winning Glasgow Convention Bureau, responsible for the successful positioning of Glasgow as a conference destination for national and international association meetings. In addition, Aileen’s role includes Destination Management, working in partnership with industry, VisitScotland and Glasgow City Council in collaboration to develop and improve the visitor experience. 

 
VYCON22 Panellists 

Abbi Ollive, Head of Marketing and Sales at Castle Howard 

Andrew Lowson, Executive Director at York BID 


Rebecca Hill, Managing Director at Galtres Lodge  

Kate McFerran, Communications Director at LNER

Go ‘Around The World’ at York Ice Trail 2022. 5-6 March 2022

The family-favourite York Ice Trail event returns to the city this winter, with over 40 ice sculptures set to line York’s streets on the 5th and 6th March.  

Go travelling ‘Around the World’ with this year’s sculptures, including main sponsor First York’s Park & Ride Bus, which can be ‘boarded’ at Parliament Street. As well as The Bettys Express Train which will be waiting for commuters in Davygate.  

This year’s sculptures will transport visitors into other destinations ‘Around the World’ and beyond, including an invitation to ‘go down the rabbit hole’ at Middletons Hotel. Their grounds will be transformed into a wonderland, with four magical ice sculptures and plenty of photo opportunities with Mad Hatter themed props. York BID have seven ice sculptures to find, one for every continent in the world, inspired by seven Disney characters ranging from classic characters to new favourites.  

City of York Council’s ‘The York Skyline’ sculpture is a must visit, with famous York landmarks carved into the ice across Exhibition Square.  

For international sport lovers, look out for the Rugby League World Cup trophy on Parliament Street in celebration of York being a host city for this autumn’s tournament.  

There’ll also be live ice carving at St Sampson’s Square with Ice Box, who create the ice sculptures. Plus, there’ll be opportunities to have a go at ice carving on the graffiti wall in Parliament Street.  

The hugely popular event, which saw 31,000 people participating in 2020’s ‘Fantastical Fiction and Fairy Tales’ trail, was cancelled last year due to the pandemic. This year’s event, which was initially set to take place in February, has been postponed to March due to rising Covid-19 cases and based on guidance from the city’s Safety Advisory Group, Public Health and City of York Council.  

This March, families and friends will have the opportunity to travel through York’s streets and find over 40 ice sculptures designed and sponsored by local businesses in York. 

York Ice Trail is a Make It York event, with main sponsors First York. 

Sarah Loftus, Managing Director at Make It York, said: “We’re delighted to be bringing back the much-loved York Ice Trail event for 2022, and although slightly later than planned, it will be worth the wait! After a couple of years where many of us haven’t been able to travel too far, this year’s theme will bring sculptures inspired from ‘around the world’ to the streets of York. There are over 40 ice sculptures to find this year, which have all been kindly sponsored by local businesses.”  

Councillor Keith Aspden, Leader of the Council, said: “York Ice Trail was, I’m sure, missed by many last year, so it’s excellent to see the much-loved event return once again in March for residents, families and visitors to enjoy safely.   

“Our city is well known and loved for its vibrant businesses, so many of whom have joined the festivities this year, with an impressive 40 sculptures set to bring some extra magic to the city.  With so many sculptures and ways to get involved, this year’s festival promises to be another unmissable event.” 

John Godfrey, Head of Marketing at First York, said: “We’ve been a supporter of the Ice Trail for three years with our own sculpture and know what anticipation and interest the event creates. This builds on our commitment to help people enjoy the leisure and social life York is famous for and look forward to seeing thousands of visitors makes the trip to marvel at the attractions around the city.” 

For more information, visit York Ice Trail | Visit York and watch this year’s York Ice Trail promotional video here. #YorkIceTrail 

For more information, please contact: 

Sarah Foster, Communications Manager at Make It York 

Comms@makeityork.com 

Notes to Editors 

York Ice Trail 2022 is taking place on 5th and 6th March, from 10am. #YorkIceTrail 

York Ice Trail is a Make It York event, supported by First York. 

About Make It York 

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business. Its mission is to grow the economic prosperity and wider wellbeing of York and its citizens. In practice, this means delivering a range of projects and programmes based around our corporate strategic priorities.   

These are:  

  • City positioning and profile-raising 
  • Ensuring an exciting city centre 
  • Delivering the city’s ground-breaking Cultural Strategy 

Page Break 

York Ice Trail 2022 sculptures: 

Around the World, Blake Street – provided by Make It York   
The York Skyline, Exhibition Square – Provided by City of York Council  
The Queen of Hearts, Lendal – Provided by The Judge’s Lodging  
Oceania: Bruce (Nemo), Wellington Row – Provided by York BID   
May I Take Your Luggage?, Station Rise – Provided by The Grand, York   
Anniversary Oak – Celebrating 70 Years, Station Road – Provided by North York Moors National Park 
Leap of Faith by Gudelia Li, Hudson Quarter – Provided by Palace Capital   
South America: Kevin (UP), Micklegate – Provided by York BID   
The Executioner’s Block, Middletons – Provided by Middletons Hotel  
Cheshire Cat, Middletons – Provided by York Gin 
The White Rabbit, Middletons – Provided by Middletons Hotel   
Mad Hatters Tea Party, Middletons – Provided by Middletons Hotel  
Take the Helm, Captain!, Kings Staith – Provided by City Cruises   
Penguin on Parade, Tower Street – Provided by York Army Museum

Africa: Simba (Lion King), Castlegate – Provided by York BID 

Wanted: Dick Turpin, Spurriergate – Provided by York Dungeons 
Big Ben Strikes Ate O’Clock, High Ousegate – Provided by Ate O’Clock   
The Vikings, Coppergate Centre – Provided by Coppergate Centre  
The Melting Earth, Piccadilly – Provided by Spark: York   
Antartica: Olaf (Frozen), Fossgate – Provided by York BID  
Europe: Remi (Ratatouille), The Shambles – Provided by York BID  
North America: Pepita (Coco), Goodramgate – Provided by York BID  
Fabergé’s Trans-Siberian Railway Egg, High Petergate – Provided by National Railway Museum   
Eco Rocks Diamon by Kay Bradley, Low Petergate – Provided by Bradleys Jewellers 
Waitress, Grape Lane – Provided by Lucia Bar   
Atlas the Turtle, Little Stonegate – Provided by Turtle Bay   
The Bettys Express Train, Davygate – Provided by Bettys  

Heavenly Delight, St Helens Square – Provided by Heavenly Desserts 
The Plane, St Helens Square – Provided by The Ivy  
Asia: Sisu (Raya and the Last Dragon), Coney Street – Provided by York BID  
The Astronaut, Davygate – Provided by Shephard Group   
Space Shuttle, Feasegate – Provided by Viewpoint   
Live Carving, St Sampson’s Square – Provided by York Ice Trail   
Cow Print, St Sampson’s Square – Provided by Cut and Craft  
Rugby League World Cup Trophy, Parliament Street – Celebrating York as a host city 
Norris the Knight, Parliament Street – Provided by York Knights   
Flying Carpet in the Market, Shambles Market – Provided by Shambles Market   
Bug Count Cash Giveaway, Parliament Street – Provided by York Mix   
Wizard Golf Challenge, Parliament Street – Provided by Hole in the Wand  
Graffiti Wall, Parliament Street – Provided by York Ice Trail  
First York Park & Ride, Parliament Street – Provided by First York  

York Residents’ Festival: Over 70 Attractions, Events And Offers Announced

York Residents’ Festival is returning this January with over 70 attractions, events and offers. Taking place predominantly over the weekend of 29th – 30th January, some offers are extended for up to a week exclusively for York residents. 

Major attractions in the city will be offering free entry to York residents, including York Minster, JORVIK Viking Centre, York Castle Museum and Merchant Adventurer’s Hall. For theatre lovers, there’ll be exclusive behind the scenes tour available to book at York Theatre Royal, Grand Opera House and Joseph Rowntree Theatre. 

There’ll also be exclusive food and drink offers at some of York’s most popular bars and eateries, including Ambiente Tapas, The Rise Restaurant at The Grand, York and Plush Café. For the chocolate lovers, there are free tours on offer at York’s Chocolate Story and York Cocoa House, plus tasty discounts at Cocoa Joe’s and Heavenly Desserts.  

For those wanting to explore outside of the city walls, Yorkshire Air Museum are offering free admission, Yorkshire Heart Vineyard and Brewery are offering free wine tours and there’s free admission to Beningbrough Hall. 

For those who prefer to explore the city on foot, there are complimentary walking tours with Anne Lister in York Walking Tour, York Historic Pub Walks, Yorkshire Appetite’s York Food Tour and more.  

There’ll also be a chance for York residents to get their hands on one of the 350 £5 York Gift Cards from York BID, in their Great Gift Card giveaway. As a thank you to residents for supporting local businesses, gift cards will be given on a first come, first served basis at the Visitor Information Centre at 1 Museum Street from 10am on Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th January. 

York Residents’ Festival is open to all York Residents who have a valid YorkCard or student ID card. YorkCards are available from all of York’s Explore libraries, with a £6 administration charge for adults (free for under 18s). YorkCard entitles users to discounts at a range of leisure facilities and attractions throughout the year.  

Sarah Loftus, Managing Director of Make It York said: “York Residents’ Festival is our way of saying thank you to residents for sharing their beautiful city with tourists throughout the year. We’re so pleased to be able to offer over 70 special offers this year, with huge savings. It’s a brilliant opportunity to rediscover corners of the city and support our local businesses. Some of the venues do require pre-booking this year to ensure social distancing, so make sure you book your place as soon as you can!”  

Councillor Keith Aspden, Leader of the Council said:  “I’m delighted that York Residents’ Festival is once again back this year. After the challenging time we have all had over the last two years, the Festival promises to be a great way for residents to safely celebrate the many wonderful attractions on offer throughout York and support our local businesses. 

“As always, our thanks go to all the partners around the city who have come together to make this event such a success. 

“There is so much to explore and discover locally, with something for everyone on offer during this fun-packed weekend of activities. I hope residents take part, enjoy and celebrate our city!” 

For the full list of offers for York Residents’ Festival, please visit www.visityork.org/resfest. Please note, some venues require pre-booking.  

York Residents’ Festival is organised by Make It York, supported by City of York Council.  

For more information: 

Sarah Foster and Brittany Guymer 

Make It York Communications team 

Comms@makeityork.com 

Notes to Editors: 

About Make It York 

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business. Its mission is to grow the economic prosperity and wider wellbeing of York and its citizens. In practice, this means delivering a range of projects and programmes based around our corporate strategic priorities.   

These are:  

  • City positioning and profile-raising 
  • Ensuring an exciting city centre 
  • Delivering the city’s ground-breaking Cultural Strategy 

Open Call to Creatives to Join York’s New Culture Forum

In 2020, the ambitious Culture Strategy mapping out the next five years of York’s Creative Future was launched. A joint initiative between Make It York, City of York Council and the Cultural Leaders Group, the strategy aims to create opportunity and make culture relevant and accessible to everyone in the city.  

The next step in York’s cultural journey is to open up the existing Cultural Leaders Group to anyone involved in the city’s creative and cultural sector, including individual artists, organisations and community groups, in what will become the new ‘Culture Forum’. The Culture Forum is open to anyone working within arts and heritage, including collections, combined arts, dance, libraries, literature, museums, music, theatre and the visual arts, as well as people’s own creative participation in, and interpretations of, culture based within York.   

The Culture Forum will be a space where people can learn about and contribute to the Culture Strategy’s future direction, whilst enabling knowledge sharing, networking and partnership building. Replacing the existing Cultural Leaders Group – which consisted of 40 leaders across the cultural creative sector in the city – the new Culture Forum will have the opportunity to elect their own executive group. In doing so, York will become the first city with an elected cultural executive group in the UK.  

To join the Culture Forum, please sign up at York Culture Forum (makeityork.com).  There will be two taster sessions via Zoom on 12th January at 3pm and 17th January at 1.30pm, before the first Culture Forum meets in late January.   

Helen Apsey, Head of Culture and Wellbeing at Make It York and Co-Chair of York Culture Forum, said: “We’re really excited to be starting the Culture Forum this January. One of our key priorities in the Culture Strategy is the ability to change the way we work to become more collaborative, and this is a major step towards this goal. We’re looking forward to seeing how the Culture Forum develops and to meeting many more people working within the cultural and creative sector, to share knowledge, develop new partnerships and to support network building. We’d encourage everyone who’s curious about the forum to come to one of our taster sessions in January to find out more.” 

Councillor Darryl Smalley, Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Communities, said: “Inclusion, participation and representation is at the core of York’s Creative Future. The Cultural Leader’s Group has served as a representative and excellent partnership of the city’s creative minds. However, as we work to put the principles of the new Culture Strategy into practice, creating a more inclusive and open forum will ensure that we make culture even more relevant and accessible to everybody in York, regardless of age, background or postcode. 

 “York is home to so many extraordinary and creative people, all of whom make this city such a vibrant place for culture and creativity. I would urge those keen to shape our city’s creative future to consider joining the new Forum at this very exciting and important time for our great city.” 

Reyahn King, CEO of York Museums Trust and former Chair of the Cultural Leaders Group, said: “When developing the Culture Strategy, we set out to be collaborative and listen to the views of creative people in York. There was a clear demand for a wider, more inclusive forum for culture so creating it is a natural step in the delivery of the Culture Strategy for York.” 

 
For more information: 

Sarah Foster and Brittany Guymer 

Make It York Communications Team 

Comms@makeityork.com 

Notes to Editors: 

About the Culture Strategy 

York’s Creative Future has inclusion and participation at its core, and the commitment to ensure that culture is relevant and accessible to everybody in York – regardless of age, background or postcode. It places culture at the heart of activities from major capital developments, to residents’ wellbeing – and will work to ensure cultural entitlement for every child. 

The Culture Strategy has the ambition to transform York – and by 2025 we believe York will be known as a city where outstanding, renowned heritage comes together with a cutting-edge and contemporary approach to creativity – reflecting the city’s rich history and its status as the UK’s first UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts. 

About Make It York 

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business. Its mission is to grow the economic prosperity and wider wellbeing of York and its citizens. In practice, this means delivering a range of projects and programmes based around our corporate strategic priorities.   

These are:  

  • City positioning and profile-raising 
  • Ensuring an exciting city centre 
  • Delivering the city’s ground-breaking Cultural Strategy 

York Artist Incubation Call Out

Twelve creative organisations in York have come together to develop an artist incubation programme for emerging artists that are based in the local region and create live performance work. This project will support 6 emerging artists or companies to develop both their artistic practise and their business knowledge. This will be done by creating a bespoke package of support, that will continue for a year.

SLAP (Supporting Live Art & Performance) are currently inviting individual artists and companies living in the YO postcode area to apply to be a part of the programme. Each successful artist or company will receive a year of tailored package of support which includes: 

  • A year of producing support from SLAP
  • 6 training sessions covering a wide range of areas that are essential to being a working artist
  • £1000 bursary
  • Production budget
  • Tailored photoshoot to create high quality marketing images
  • Creative commission
  • Two weeks residency space – at one of our partner venues
  • Opportunities to deliver workshops
  • Use of a City Centre office space
  • Performance Date  – at one of our partner venues
  • Documentation of your live performance

To learn more and apply visit – https://slapyork.co.uk/artist-incubation 

Deadline – Monday 3rd January, 5pm 

This project has been made possible with the support of the following organisations: Arts Council England, Accessible Arts & Media, Explore Libraries and Archives Mutual Limited, Guild of Media Arts, Kaizen Arts CIC, Make It York, Mediale, York Museums Trust, York Music Venue Network, York St John University, York Theatre Royal and Yorkshire Dance.

Visit York Tourism Awards 2022 finalists revealed

Finalists in the Visit York Tourism Awards, sponsored by LNER, have been revealed today. The prestigious awards ceremony returns on Thursday 3rd March 2022 with the best of York’s businesses going head to head to win one of 15 trophies. The event aims to shine a spotlight on excellence in York’s tourism sector and reward outstanding service, innovation, quality and resilience.   

These prestigious ‘Tourism Oscars of the North’ will be hosted by York Mix Radio Presenters Ben Fry and Laura Castle and will be held at the splendid York Racecourse. Eligible winners across a number of categories will be automatically put forward to the national Visit England Awards for Excellence 2022 to compete for the crown of the country’s best.  

New categories for 2022 include ‘Resilience & Innovation Award’ to honour organisations who have built on their strengths, innovated their business and showed incredible resilience during a difficult time for the industry. Another new ‘Unsung Hero’ award recognises an individual working for a tourism business who excels in their role and deserves to be applauded for their work and commitment to the industry. 

Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York, said: “We are so proud of the vibrant and flourishing tourism sector in York, which welcomes millions of visitors to the city each year as well as creates an atmosphere full of culture and diversity for the residents. There are so many organisations around the city working incredibly hard year round to deliver the highest quality visitor experiences, which has been especially challenging during the past two years. The awards will reward those who are truly exceptional in their field. Good luck to all finalists – we all look forward to celebrating the successes at the ceremony in March.” 

David Horne, Managing Director at LNER, said: “From historic sites to wonderful places to eat and stay, York has so much to offer and is one of our most popular destinations on the LNER route. It is therefore great to see so many of the city’s businesses and individuals who work incredibly hard to create outstanding visitor experiences, recognised at the Visit York Tourism Awards.” 

 
Councillor Darryl Smalley: Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Communities, said: “We all know what an incredibly challenging 18 months these businesses will all have faced, and that’s why it’s more important than ever to celebrate the incredible range of businesses that York is lucky enough to be home to. These businesses are an essential part of our great city and I am delighted to see such a diverse group of finalists this year. I wish them all the best of luck and whilst it’s been said many times before, it really is a significant achievement to be shortlisted and you are all winners already.” 

Visit York Tourism Awards Finalists 2022:  

B&B and Guest House of the Year ** 

MonkBridge House 

Tower Guest House 

Westergate House 

Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year ** 
Springwood Shepherd Huts Glamping York 

Wigwam Holidays Ball Hall Farm 

Wolds Walk Glamping 

Experience of the Year ** 
Castle Howard 

The Bloody Tour of York 

The Cookery School at The Grand, York 

The Deathly Dark Tours 

Event of the Year* ** 
That JORVIK Viking Thing 

The Great Ryedale Maze 

York Balloon Fiesta  

York Maze 

Large Hotel of the Year – Sponsored by Streamline Taxis 

Hotel Indigo York 

Middletons Hotel 

The Grand, York 

The Principal York 

Sandburn Hall Hotel 

 
Large Visitor Attraction of the Year – Sponsored by YO1 Radio 
JORVIK Viking Centre 

The York Dungeon 

York Art Gallery 

York’s Chocolate Story 

New Tourism Business of the Year – Sponsored by City Cruises 
The Deathly Dark Tours 

Malmaison York 

Sandburn Hall Hotel 

York Riverside Apartments 

Pub of the Year – Sponsored by Hunter Gee Holroyd 
House of Trembling Madness Lendal 

House of Trembling Madness Stonegate 

The Drovers Arms Restaurant & Country Pub 

Self Catering Accommodation of the Year ** 

Heritage Escapes (York) 

Roomzzz Aparthotels – York City 

Staycity Aparthotels 

The Enchantment Chamber 

The Riverside York 

Resilience and Innovation Award – Sponsored by Fabler & Co 

The Deathly Dark Tours 

The Drovers Arms Restaurant & Country Pub 

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway 

The Web Adventure Park 

Trembling Madness Ltd 

York Gin 

Shop Experience of the Year* – Sponsored by Fidomoney  
The Antiques Centre York 

York’s Chocolate Story 

York Gin 

Small Hotel of the Year – Sponsored by Hospitality Staffing 
Galtres Lodge 

Grays Court Hotel & The Bow Room Restaurant 

The Judge’s Lodging 

Small Visitor Attraction of the Year ** 

Fairfax House 

Mother Shipton’s  

York Army Museum 

Taste of England Award** 
Forest at Galtres Lodge 

Mr Chippy York 

Plush Café 

The Bow Room Restaurant at Grays Court Hotel 

The Drovers Arms Restaurant & Country Pub 

Unsung Hero Award - Sponsored by LNER 

Dean Court Hotel 

Middletons Hotel 

Galtres Lodge 

*Visit York only. These categories are not eligible to go forward to the Visit England Awards for Excellence. 

**Sponsorship opportunities available. 

Tickets for the glittering awards ceremony event on Thursday 3rd March 2022 are available from today. Book your tickets here. 

ENDS 

For further information please contact:  

Sarah Foster, Communications Manager at Make It York 

Email: comms@makeityork.com 

Notes to Editors: 

Make It York  

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, Shambles Market and festivals and events. 

Visit York is a part of Make It York and is the leisure tourism brand  

Under the brand Visit York, Make It York’s aim is to market York as a must-see world-class destination to the leisure visitor and ensure investment to develop the quality of tourism in York. 

Key tourism facts (pre-covid): 

8.4 million visitors annually, £765 million total visitor spend, supporting 24,000 jobs 

Winners of the Visit York Tourism Awards 2020: 

B&B and Guest House of the Year – sponsored by Booking.com  
Winner: Woodlands Farm Thimbleby 
Finalists: No.21 York 

Business Events Venue of the Year – sponsored by Spark 
Winner: The Grand, York  
Finalists: Novotel, York BarbicanYork Racecourse 

Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year – sponsored by Minster FM 
Winner: Vale of Pickering Caravan Park 
Finalists: Wolds Edge Holiday Lodges, York Holiday & Cycle Stop  

Experience of the Year – sponsored by LNER 
Winner: The Bloody Tour of York 
Highly Commended: The Cookery School at The Grand, York 
Finalists: Castle Howard, Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience 

Event of the Year* – sponsored by LNER 
Winner: York Maze Hallowscream 
Highly Commended: York Minster – The Northern Lights 
Finalists:  JORVIK Viking Festival 

International Tourism Award – sponsored by City Cruises York 
Winner: The Grand, York  
Finalists: OE Media 

Large Hotel of the Year – sponsored by Streamline Taxis 
Winner: The Grand, York 
Finalists: Grantley Hall, Hotel Indigo York, The Principal Hotel 
 
Large Visitor Attraction of the Year – sponsored by Fowlers of York 
Winner: Castle Howard  
Finalists: JORVIK Viking Centre, National Railway Museum 

New Tourism Business of the Year – sponsored by Minster FM  
Winner: Grantley Hall 
Finalists: Northwood Trail, England’s Fairy Sanctuary, OE Media, Yorkshire Appetite Food Tours 

Pub of the Year – sponsored by Hunter Gee Holroyd 
Winner: The Drovers Arm Restaurant & Country Pub 
Finalists: House of Trembling Madness (Lendal), The Ackhorne, The Botanist York 

Self Catering Accommodation of the Year – sponsored by HomeAway 
Winner: Wolds Edge Holiday Lodges 
Finalists: Serenity Inn the City, The Enchantment Chamber 

Shop of the Year* – sponsored by York BID 
Winner: York Gin 
Highly Commended: Bluebird Bakery 
Finalists: The Balloon Tree Farmshop & Café, The Shop That Must Not Be Named 

Small Hotel of the Year – sponsored by Yorkshire Laundry Services 
Winner: Grays Court Hotel 
Finalists: Dean Court Hotel, The Parisi Hotel 

Small Visitor Attraction of the Year – sponsored by York Pass 
Winner: Energi Trampoline Park  
Finalists: Barley Hall, Locked in Games York, Mother Shipton’s Cave, York Army Museum 

Taste of York Award – sponsored by Morrell Middleton 
Winner: Roots, York 
Highly Commended: The Whippet Inn 
Finalists: Plush Café, The Star Inn The City, The York Roast Co 

Accessible & Inclusive Tourism Award – sponsored by Yorkshire Gas & Power  
Winner: JORVIK Group of Attractions 

Tourism Champion of the Year* 
Winner: Ben Fry 

RLWC2021: Rescheduled Fixtures For York Announced

  • With one year to go to the RLWC2021 finals, the revised schedule for 2022 has been published in full and is available via: rlwc2021.com/schedule  
  • All 18 original host town and cities remain involved with the rescheduling only impacting five matches (four match-days)
  • York to host eight women’s matches, including both semi-finals at LNER Community Stadium
  • All tournament finals to be played in Manchester with Manchester Central set to host the wheelchair final
  • Wigan’s DW Stadium to host the double-header men’s quarter final and England v Canada women’s Group A match
  • General admission tickets and hospitality for all 61 matches will go on sale from 9am GMT today (19 November) via: rlwc2021.com/tickets

In exactly one year’s time, the biggest and best Rugby League World Cup in history will reach its thrilling climax in a showpiece weekend in Manchester featuring the wheelchair final followed by the double-header men’s and women’s final at Old Trafford. 

Today (November 19) Rugby League World Cup 2021 tournament organisers have confirmed the full revised 61 match schedule for the tournament in 2022 including the full fixtures for York.

Across the city, partners have been working with the Rugby League World Cup team to bring the event to York – including City of York Council, York City Knights, Make It York, GLL, York St John University, University of York and Queen Ethelberga’s – with the games set to be held at the new LNER community stadium next year.

York will host eight women’s matches, including the double-header semi-final at LNER Community Stadium:

  • 2 Nov: New Zealand vs France at 17:00
  • 2 Nov: Australia vs Cook Islands at 19:30
  • 6 Nov: New Zealand vs Cook Islands at 17:00
  • 6 Nov: Australia vs France at 19:30
  • 10 Nov: France vs Cook Islands at 17:00
  • 10 Nov: Australia vs New Zealand at 19:30
  • 14 Nov: Semi-Final 1 at 17:00
  • 14 Nov: Semi-Final 2 at 19:30

Five weeks of world-class sporting action begins at St James’ Park, Newcastle on October 15 before Headingley Stadium, Leeds opens the women’s tournament on November 1 and a double-header at the iconic Copper Box, London kicks off the wheelchair event on November 3. Full schedule is available here.

Only five RLWC2021 fixtures (four match-days) have been affected during the rescheduling of 61 matches staged at 21 iconic venues, across 18 host towns and cities. These changes involve the switching of two fixtures between existing venues in Leeds and Hull and the relocation of fixtures from Anfield Stadium and M&S Bank Arena.

In the men’s tournament there will be one venue swap with the match between Australia and Fiji on the opening day (October 15) now taking place at Headingley Stadium, Leeds due to a clash with another event in Hull. In return, the MKM Stadium, Hull will now host New Zealand v Jamaica in Group C on October 22 – a fixture that was due to be played in Leeds.

Wigan’s DW Stadium will provide the stage for the double-header which features the second men’s quarter-final as well as England women v Canada women on November 5.

Manchester will create further sporting history by hosting all three tournament finals over a weekend of global Rugby League celebration. Manchester Central in the heart of the city centre will now host the wheelchair final on November 18. The following day (November 19) the showpiece men’s and women’s double-header final will take place at Old Trafford, Manchester.

All 32 teams across the 21 competing nations participating in the men’s, women’s and wheelchair tournaments have fully committed to the revised tournament schedule in 2022.

General admission tickets and hospitality for all 61 matches will be back on-sale from 9am GMT today in line with the full schedule reveal. Tickets can be purchased via: www.rlwc2021.com/tickets

Fans who have already purchased tickets for fixtures that have been changed will be contacted with information on their options from November 24. A dedicated refund window will be available from then until November 30.

Jon Dutton, RLWC2021 Chief Executive Officer, said:

“We have achieved our objective in delivering minimal disruption to the existing 61-match schedule and I want to place on record my thanks to all those who have made it possible.

“Every host town and city who joined us on this journey remains involved and they will set the stage for the very best that the sport has to offer. There are world class, compelling matches, across all three tournaments at some of the most iconic venues across England.

“We are delighted to make tickets available to purchase again and supporters can now look forward to being part of this unique global event. With match dates and locations confirmed, the excitement will only intensify as we look to the horizon and the biggest and best Rugby League World Cup.”

ENDS

For more information, contact:

Sarah Foster, Communications Manager, Make It York, comms@makeityork.com

Michael Gibson, Head of Media & Communications, RLWC2021, michael.gibson@rlwc2021.com, +44 (0) 7435 556074

About Rugby League World Cup 2021

The Rugby League World Cup is the pinnacle major event of Rugby League.RLWC2021 will be a breakthrough moment in the tournament’s history with the men’s, women’s and wheelchair competitions being staged together for the first time.

The three tournaments will take place across 21 venues throughout England. Both the women’s and wheelchair competitions will be contested by two groups of four teams, whilst the men’s tournament will see 16 teams compete across four groups.

RLWC2021 will be the most visible rugby league event in history with all 61 games in the men’s, women’s and wheelchair competitions being broadcast live on the BBC.

Vision: Delivering the biggest and best ever Rugby League World Cup.

Mission: Creating inspirational moments that excite, engage, and leave a long-lasting legacy.

About Make It York

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business. Its mission is to grow the economic prosperity and wider wellbeing of York and its citizens. In practice, this means delivering a range of projects and programmes based around our corporate strategic priorities. 

These are:

  • City positioning and profile-raising
  • Ensuring an exciting city centre
  • Delivering the city’s ground-breaking Cultural Strategy

Sarah Loftus joins Make It York as Managing Director

Sarah Loftus has taken her position as the new Managing Director of Make It York. 

Formerly the Chief Executive of the Lincoln Business Improvement Group (BIG), Sarah will take a lead on the delivery of a refreshed and innovative tourism strategy for the City of York. She will also take a lead on driving forward the city’s cultural strategy and promote York’s profile regionally, nationally and internationally. 

Sarah joins Make It York with a wealth of experience, with previously held positions including the Corporate Director for Economic Growth at Trafford Council and Service Director for Economic Growth and Strategic Housing for Wakefield Council. She also had a series of different roles in the six years she worked for Yorkshire Forward culminating in the role of Assistant Director for the Humber Region in 2008/9. 

Sarah’s first week of business will include the return of St Nicholas Fair, which opens later this week on Thursday 18th November. There will be 68 alpine chalets spread across Parliament Street and St Sampson’s Square, offering a range of unique gifts, seasonal food and drinks and local produce.  

Greg Dyke, Chair of Make It York said: “We are delighted to have Sarah in place as the Managing Director of Make It York. Sarah has a wealth of invaluable experience from the work she has done in Lincoln, Wakefield and Humberside. Knowing the city well, we look forward to Sarah helping us shape what is set to be an exciting future for York.” 

Sarah Loftus, Managing Director of Make It York said: “York has been named the best city in the UK, I’m looking forward to leading Make It York to be the best Destination Management Organisation in the UK. I intend to be very clear on the function of Make It York and what we plan to deliver for the city over the next few years, including great events for both residents and visitors to enjoy. My aim is to attract visitors that will love and respect York the way that residents do, encouraging them to stay longer, spend more and have a positive impact on York’s economy.” 

For more information or interview requests, please contact: 

Sarah Foster, Communications Manager at Make It York 

Sarah.Foster@makeityork.com  

About Make It York 

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, festivals and events and culture.  

Visit York is a part of Make It York and is the leisure tourism brand  

Under the brand Visit York, Make It York’s aim is to market York as a must-see world-class destination to the leisure visitor and ensure investment to develop the quality of tourism in York. 

Visit York Tourism Conference 2022 looks ahead to ‘tourism in a post-pandemic world’

‘What kind of tourism do we want for the future and how can we get more from York’s visitor economy?’ will be the main topics of debate at the upcoming virtual Visit York Tourism Conference which will take place on Thursday 13th January 2022.  Businesses from across the city are invited to take part in this event which will explore how we can maximise York’s potential as a creative, inclusive and innovative place to live and visit. The virtual event is sponsored by LNER with tickets now available to book online.   

The event, compered by BBC Look North & BBC Radio York Presenter Clare Frisby, has a line up of expert tourism speakers including: Signe Jungersted and Peter Rømer Hansen, Founding Partners of Group NAO; Richard Nicholls, Head of Research and Forecasting at Visit Britain; and Aileen Crawford, Head of Tourism & Conventions at Glasgow Convention Bureau – with a welcome from Sarah Loftus, the newly appointed Managing Director of Make It York. A panel of tourism businesses including Abbi Ollive, Head of Marketing and Sales at Castle Howard; Andrew Lowson, Executive Director at York BID; Rebecca Hill, Managing Director at Galtres Lodge; and Kate McFerran, Communications Director at LNER, will also share their vision for the visitor economy and how we take a more holistic approach to York as a destination.  

Keynote speakers Signe Jungersted and Peter Rømer Hansen from Group NAO will lead the debate on how we can “build back better” post-pandemic and ensure our tourism industry creates value for the city beyond the typical metrics of growth in visitor numbers and visitor spend.  Looking at how we can take inspiration from cities across Europe, Group NAO have put together an in-depth report to explore the opportunities for York’s visitor economy. Presenting on their findings, Signe and Peter will discuss how the tourism industry can work together to develop and deliver a bigger, broader and bolder tourism strategy for the city post-covid.  

Delegates will also hear the latest insights and market trends from Visit Britain on the return of international tourism and learn more from Glasgow Convention Bureau on how business tourism can take the lead on a city’s sustainability strategy.  

Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York, said ‘“We have a packed programme lined up for our next Visit York Tourism Conference, with insights from a range of expert speakers across the industry. Looking at how we maximise the value of our visitor economy will be key as we develop our tourism strategy post-covid and we are delighted to welcome Signe and Peter from Group NAO to present the findings from their recent research into the opportunities for York’s tourism industry. We will also be exploring key issues across the sector such as the return of international travel and how we ensure a sustainable approach to tourism. We look forward to bringing this event back for 2022 and welcoming businesses across the city to join us in the debate on how we create a bold vision for the future of the city’s tourism industry.”  

Signe Jungersted, CEO and Founding Partner at Group NAO, said: “There is an important paradigm shift taking place in tourism these years, shifting from tourism as an isolated goal in itself to tourism as an integrated means to sustain better quality of life in the cities that welcome tourism. In interviews and discussions with representatives of York’s wider visitor and experience economy, it became clear that while most agree York has fared well through the crisis, there is a strong and shared ambition to take a leap further into the future and rebuild York’s visitor economy in a more sustainable and integrated way. We can’t wait to discuss what that future might look like with everyone at the Visit York Tourism Conference 2022” 

Sponsors of VYCON22, LNER’S Managing Director David Horne said: “We are proud of the role LNER plays in York’s tourism industry, with our business delivering an annual contribution of more than £486 million to the Yorkshire and Humber economy. Our environmentally friendly fleet of Azuma trains offer the most sustainable and enjoyable way for people to come and explore the great range of attractions, heritage and culture on offer. The Visit York Tourism Conference 2022 is an invaluable opportunity to come together and build on the great work already underway to attract even more people to come and experience York.” 

ENDS 

For further information please contact:  

Sarah Foster – Communications Manager at Make It York 

Direct Line: 07719105088 

Email: sarah.foster@makeityork.com   

Notes to Editors: 

Virtual Conference Timings

09:30 Conference Opens – Clare Frisby

09:35 Welcome – Sarah Loftus

09:45 When will International Tourism Return? – VisitBritain

Richard Nicholls, Head of Research and Forecasting at VisitBritain, covers the latest insights and market trends from Visit Britain on the return of international tourism to the UK. 

10:05 Tourism for a Better City – Group NAO

In Autumn 2020, Make it York commissioned Group NAO to elaborate on how York’s visitor economy could ‘build back better’ post pandemic.

Group NAO scanned the European horizon for inspirational reference cases and interviewed close to 20 key stakeholders in York’s visitor economy and city management about their inspirations and aspirations for the future.

Signe Jungersted and Peter Rømer Hansen, founding Partners of Group NAO, present the results from this research.

10:35 Becoming a sustainable destination – Glasgow Convention Bureau

We hear from Aileen Crawford, Head of Tourism & Conventions at Glasgow Convention Bureau, about how business tourism can take the lead on a city’s sustainability strategy, becoming a sustainable destination and getting the accreditation to prove it.

As part of their journey towards city resilience, Glasgow City Council and Visit Glasgow have joined the GDS (Global Destinations Sustainability) movement, the world’s leading benchmarking and performance improvement programme for tourism destinations.

10.55 Break

11:10 Panel discussion 

A panel of tourism businesses share their vision for the visitor economy and how we take a more holistic approach to York as a destination.

11.30 Conference closes 

About Make It York 

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, festivals and events and culture.  

Visit York is a part of Make It York and is the leisure tourism brand  

Under the brand Visit York, Make It York’s aim is to market York as a must-see world-class destination to the leisure visitor and ensure investment to develop the quality of tourism in York. 

About the Speakers 

Richard Nicholls, Head of Research and Forecasting at Visit Britain 

Richard Nicholls joined VisitBritain in 2015 as Head of Research and Forecasting. He and his team are responsible for analysis of inbound tourism data, insights and prospects both for VisitBritain and for the benefit of the wider UK tourism industry. 

Signe Jungersted and Peter Rømer Hansen, Founding Partners at Group NAO 

Signe Jungersted and Peter Rømer Hansen are founding partners in innovation and strategy agency Group NAO. Group NAO works with strategic transformation and innovation within the experience and visitor economy. Recent projects include 101sustainableideas.com with Gothenburg, Power of Community series with European Cities Marketing, ‘Tourism Taxes by Design’ and ‘Time for DMOcracy’ as multi-client projects. 

Aileen Crawford, Head of Tourism & Conventions at Glasgow Convention Bureau  

Aileen is Head of Tourism & Conventions at the award-winning Glasgow Convention Bureau, responsible for the successful positioning of Glasgow as a conference destination for national and international association meetings. In addition, Aileen’s role includes Destination Management, working in partnership with industry, VisitScotland and Glasgow City Council in collaboration to develop and improve the visitor experience. 

 
About the Panellists 

Abbi Ollive, Head of Marketing and Sales at Castle Howard 
Abbi is a proud Yorkshire marketing and communications devotee and current member of Castle Howard’s Senior Management Team. After a ten year career in Theatre and a shorter stint in Higher Education, Abbi made the move into the Heritage and Visitor Attractions sector and has been Head of Marketing and Sales at Castle Howard for the past four years. 

Andrew Lowson, Executive Director at York BID 
Andrew began his career undertaking commercial master planning and project management within the aviation and rail sectors.  From this he worked in the area of economic development for a government agency before becoming Managing Director of a York based events company, where he helped double turnover and expanded operations into the south of the UK.  Andrew was appointed as Executive Director of the York BID due to his experience of running a small business alongside his understanding of working with multiple stakeholders on economic improvement programmes; not to mention his passion for York. 

Rebecca Hill, Managing Director at Galtres Lodge  

Rebecca Hill is the owner of Galtres Lodge Hotel and its Forest restaurant in York. She is also a marketing and revenue consultant for Hilltop Consulting, board member for York BID and as of early 2021 the newly appointed chair of Indie York. 

Yorkshire Schools Dance Festival Celebrates Rugby League World Cup 2021 ‘Power of Together’ Theme

This year, the Yorkshire Schools Dance Festival are supporting the Rugby League World Cup to celebrate a shared message – “The Power of Together’. 

The 2021 Yorkshire Schools Dance (YSDF21) will be staged at the University of York across the weekends of the 13th/14th and 20th/21st November. 1200 children and young people from 56 schools, colleges and groups across the Yorkshire region will be performing.

Taking place around 12 months before the Rugby League World Cup (RLWC2021) begins, YSDF21 will celebrate the tournament’s ‘Power of Together’ theme. In a breakthrough moment for Rugby League, the men’s, women’s and wheelchair games will be coming together for the first time on the sport’s biggest stage – bigger, better and bolder than ever before.

The theme has been adopted for YSDF21 with all participating schools, colleges and groups creating unique performances in response to ‘The Power of Together’. We’ll see interpretations that celebrate human and emotional connections. We’ll also be celebrating the creativity of the teachers, dance leaders and young dancers as well as the power of dance to communicate important messages that connect us together as communities.

The Festival, sponsored by Yorkshire Education Recruitment, supports and promotes dance within schools. Colin Jackson, Producer of the Event says, “The theme has never been more relevant. After a difficult year for all of us, this is a unique opportunity to put the voice of children and young people centre stage. We know that their message will be clear – that by working together towards shared aims we can achieve almost anything.”

Cllr Darryl Smalley, executive member for culture at City of York Council, said: “The Schools Dance Festival is a very fitting way to mark the one-year-to-go milestone of the Rugby League World Cup, something to which York and the whole country is eagerly anticipating. The shared theme of our ‘Power of Together’ is a relevant and increasingly important message which we can all relate to. As a city, York has put this message into practice throughout the last 19 months, as communities have come together in a time of need.

“I’m really looking forward to the excellent displays of talent and enthusiasm of all those participating. After a difficult year, it’s events such as these that bring burst of much-needed joy to us all.”

Laura Pagan, a teacher at Scarcroft Primary School in York said:  “Our School are exploring how it feels to be excluded by friends or society and thinking about how coming together in support of others is a powerful tool to avoid people feeling isolated. We have a very large group of enthusiastic dancers who are looking forward to taking part in the dance festival again.”

 Tickets for the 2021 Yorkshire Schools Dance Festival are available via the website. Anyone purchasing tickets for YSDF21 will be entered into a prize draw to win 4 tickets for the Rugby League World Cup matches scheduled for York’s Community Stadium.

Tickets for next year’s RLWC2021 Tournament will be available to buy in winter 2021 once the full 2022 schedule has been released. Visit www.RLWC2021.com for more information and for details on how to sign up to receive ticket alerts and all the latest news first.

Visit www.yorkshireschoolsdancefestival.co.uk to purchase tickets.

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