The Evening Standard last week had a article on the effects the recession is expected to have on numbers of tourist visitors to the city this year. The paper states that visits to the UK were down by 8% in the year ending May 2009, whilst actual visitor numbers dropped by half a million last year, compared to 2007.
More Britons may be considering a “staycation” this year (i.e. not going abroad, but visiting elsewhere in the country instead) which may help visitor numbers, and the Pound’s fall against the Euro may also boost numbers from the Continent. There aren’t expected to be as many long-haul travellers, however: the Standard reports that American visitors (who are London’s top visitors in terms of numbers, as well as the top spenders) dropped by 17% in 2008.
How does Notting Hill come into all this – what are its visitors numbers like? Getting my hands on some actual statistics (if it were possible) would be great, but a bit of visual research seems to conclude that…well…it’s doing fine. Down in Portobello Market this past Saturday (usually a complete no-no, as it’s simply too crowded) revealed that the area was well and truly bustling.
Tourism here will presumably suffer during the recession, and most likely has. Do to the popularity of the area, it is also like that it will recover reasonably quickly. It’s always going to be a popular area given its location, style and amenities.
It almost sounds a bit like the property market in Notting Hill – which suffered quite badly in the second half of last year and the beginning of this year, but is now seeing a definite upward trend.
Well, let’s hope so it all recovers, anyway!