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09 Sep 2016

‘Driving’ British tourists to the island of Ireland

Promoting car touring holidays at the Goodwood Revival vintage car festival

Six Irish tourism companies have joined Tourism Ireland at this year’s Goodwood Revival, which takes place this weekend (9–11 September) in Chichester, in southern England.

The Goodwood Revival is one of the largest vintage car festival events in Britain, offering a fantastic platform to spread the word about car touring holidays around the island of Ireland. It attracts about 150,000 motor enthusiasts over three days, who come to enjoy the glamour and nostalgia of the 1940s, 50s and 60s, the golden era of motor racing.

Tourism Ireland’s presence at the Goodwood Revival is just one element of the organisation’s busy autumn promotional programme, which is in full swing right now. The programme aims to boost late-season travel to Ireland – from Britain and elsewhere around the world. The September to December period usually yields as much as 30% of Ireland’s overseas tourism business.

Julie Wakley, Tourism Ireland’s Deputy Head of Great Britain, said: “Tourism Ireland is encouraging people to come and discover the island of Ireland by car. Visitors who use a car on holidays tend to stay longer, spend more and are more likely to visit more than one region. Our attendance at this year’s Goodwood Revival is an excellent platform to highlight our driving routes – including the Wild Atlantic Way, Causeway Coastal Route and Ireland’s Ancient East.

“Britain is the largest market for tourism to the island of Ireland and we have seen strong growth in British visitor numbers so far this year, with the latest CSO figures indicating growth of almost +14% for January to July, more than 272,000 extra British visitors compared with the same seven-month period in 2015.”

Tourism Ireland and 12 tourism partners will also attend the Classic Motor Show in Birmingham, in November – the most popular car exhibition in Britain.

  Fiona Delahunty, Griffin Group; Suzanne Meade, Edward Hotels; Brian Miley, Muckross Park Hotel, Killarney; Julie McLaughlin, Tourism NI; Emily Dodd, Tourism Ireland; John Ryan, Pembroke Hotel, Kilkenny; David Cleary, Manor House Hotels & Irish Country Hotels; Maria McEnery, Ireland’s Blue Book, at the Goodwood Revival.

Notes To Editors

  • Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
  • Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 220,000 people.
  • In 2015, we welcomed approximately 9.3 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €4.7 billion.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted about 16.5 million visitors in 2015.