Carmarthenshire’s Destination Management Plan (DMP) has clear ambitions for event programming in the county (evolvement, variety and sustainability) and presents events as part of a suite of activity that will assist in extending the “traditional” season, encouraging visits throughout the year.
In line with the region, and indeed the majority of Wales, the county works hard to address seasonality and encourage tourism in shoulder season periods. E.g. the vast proportion of economic impact stated in the county’s 2015 STEAM (Scarborough Tourism Economic Activity) figure of £355 million was generated during peak holiday months rather than spread over twelve months.
With over 5.6 million tourist days and 3.08 million tourists staying in nearly 600 separate establishments in Carmarthenshire (STEAM, 2015), there is definitely an audience for events if they are planned and programmed in line with consumer interest. As well as staying visitors, the right events can stimulate visits from at least a 2 hours drive time of the county, capitalising on large conurbations along the M4 corridor including Swansea and Cardiff.
It is important to note that events planned for the tourism visitor base can appeal equally to a local resident population – the two are not mutually exclusive:
Based on the vision for overall tourism in the Destination Plan this is the proposed vision for events in Carmarthenshire.
To develop a sustainable events offer in Carmarthenshire, based on the County’s unique strengths and character, which generates higher spend and local income, enhances the destination’s image and reputation and improves the quality of life for local communities.
This vision is backed up by 3 key objectives:
- Create an environment which nurtures and supports events
- Refresh and develop an on-brand events programme
- Support an active and consistent approach to event planning, management and evaluation