The Exciting Untapped Potential In England’s North Country | TravelResearchOnline

The Exciting Untapped Potential In England’s North Country

With Virgin Atlantic offering regular direct flights from Atlanta and New York to Manchester, make a note of their new services from San Francisco (3 per week from 22nd May) and Boston (2 per week from 23rd May). As many of you have clients who’ll relish the idea of avoiding LHR (at least for the outward journey), my top story suggests a different approach to encouraging them to use this great northern gateway.

The excitement continues throughout the summer with 17 living history performances of Kynren, an epic event on an epic scale, and two garden festivals to be enjoyed from a base in the Viking city of York. Staying with the horticultural theme, the story about Wells Dressing will interest garden tour planners and a cup of tea in a Wedgwood china cup definitely tastes different during a post factory tour and some shopping at the World of Wedgwood.

If you know anyone interested in steam trains, use the two words ‘Flying Scotsman’ and you’ll connect with friends of theirs with a similar interest. Fans of Masterpiece Theatre will be interested in Emily Brontë’s anniversary and for anyone interested in Methodist Heritage tours, the 2019 heads up will be well timed.


Beyond The Manchester Gateway

Fire your anglophile client’s imaginations by promoting Manchester as the fast route to the worlds of Beatrix Potter, William Wordsworth, Lewis Carroll, James Herriot, the Brontës, David Hockney, Sir Henry Moore, JMW Turner, LS Lowry, the Beatles, Wedgwood and the Flying Scotsman. This is a genuine Aladdin’s Cave of untapped potential that’s now much closer and accessible than ever before.


An Epic Tale On An Epic Scale

Kynren, the UK’s ‘must see’ spectacular live outdoor show takes place in County Durham in England’s north east. In just 90 minutes, this world-class performance takes you on a breath-taking time travel adventure through 2,000 years of history, myth, and legend. Set against the magnificent backdrop of Auckland Castle, it’s delivered by a 1,000-strong cast and some awesome pyrotechnics and special effects.

Bloomin’ Gorgeous

For the enterprising travel planner, the northern gateway of Manchester offers a wide variety of memorable new UK travel experiences. Lovers of our historic castles, magnificent stately homes and gardens will love this travel less, see more itinerary. Based in the Viking city of York it features a day at the Castle Howard Flower Show and Bloom, York’s first horticultural festival.

The Ancient Art of Wells Dressing

Throughout the spring/summer Peak District/Derbyshire villages come alive with this ancient tradition of creating magnificent floral displays which give thanks for the supply of pure water. Huge wooden frames containing a bed of moist clay are decorated with intricate pictures using petals, seeds, bark, and other natural products. Many villages have several of them on display during their annual well dressing week.

Making Time For Tea

After a fascinating factory tour and some shopping time, the Wedgwood Tea Room at the World of Wedgwood, Stoke-on-Trent will give you a contemporary and indulgent interpretation of afternoon tea, including a delicious selection of sweet and savoury dishes. You’ll be spoilt for choice with over fifty of their finest teas to choose from, served in the finest Wedgwood china of course.

Building a Head of Steam

In 2016, many railway enthusiasts got all steamed up when the iconic Flying Scotsman made an impressive reappearance. Steam Preservation Societies may not be your number one choice for an untapped niche market but if you look at the membership of the Association of Tourist Railroads and Museums, you may have second thoughts. One of your best clients could be an enthusiast…

Emily Brontë’s Anniversary

If your niche market connections include a branch of the Friends of Libraries, bookstores and English teachers, talk to them about Haworth in Yorkshire which was home to the Brontë sisters and is surrounded by the wild, windswept moors that inspired many of their works. 2018 is a special time to visit as the village unites to celebrate Emily Brontë’s 200th anniversary.

Chippendale Tercentenary

In June, the Yorkshire town of Otley will be staging a Celebrating Chippendale Festival to mark the 300th anniversary of Thomas Chippendale, Britain’s greatest furniture maker. The month-long event includes a birthday party in the building where he was schooled, a concert of 18th-century music in the church where he was baptised, talks by Chippendale Society members and an Antiques Roadshow-style event.

Important Methodist Anniversary in 2019

Susanna Wesley was the daughter of Dr Samuel Annesley and Mary White and mother of John and Charles Wesley. Although she never preached a sermon or published a book or founded a church, she’s known as the Mother of Methodism. Flying them into Manchester and out of London will reveal a whole new world of possibilities.  Watch this space for further details.


Paull Tickner, owner of U.K.-based Custom GB, is known for his expertise in creating and operating imaginative, value-added tours of Great Britain and Ireland. Visit his website at or email him at

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