Natural and cultural resources
This feasibility study will consider a visitor giving scheme in Pembrokeshire. The proposed scheme would raise awareness of conservation issues amongst local businesses and visitors and raise funds to be spent on nature conservation projects, directed by the strategic priorities laid out in key local plans.
The project has addressed the community need to conserve the local environment and biodiversity so that this essential resource can support a tourism industry that is dependent on a good quality environment, sustainable into the future. The project identified that developing ‘visitor giving’ could help raise funds and awareness of the importance of the environment to visitor experience and following research with stakeholders, online surveys for visitors and local businesses a feasibility report with recommendations was produced and a further ‘next steps report’ was written.
The project has improved understanding of the Pembrokeshire Nature Partnership and members of the steering group of visitor and business needs and expectations. It has highlighted the importance of the nature environment and experiences interacting with nature and the environment as those that are special and valued by visitors and understood to be important by businesses – learning which can be incorporated into future development.
” Almost half the respondents (49%) were from England, 20% were local to Pembrokeshire and 26% from elsewhere in Wales. 18% of respondents visit Pembrokeshire once a year, and 9% twice a year. 28% are more regular visitors, visiting a few times a year. 18% visit a few times each week. The main reasons for visiting Pembrokeshire were for the beauty of the natural landscape (84%), because it is peaceful, quiet and/or relaxing (74%), for high quality beaches and/or bathing (71%), because of having enjoyed previous visits (63%) and to visit the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park (61%). 90% of visitors say the wildlife and landscape of Pembrokeshire is very important to them, and 9% say it is important. Most features are important to visitors – particularly beaches and dunes, coastal slopes and cliffs, and footpaths. Woodlands and the marine environment were important to around 80% of visitors.”
It would have been better to schedule face-to-face meetings with visitor economy businesses; the learning curve with regards to the difference between ‘fund raising’ and ‘campaigns’ has been beneficial; more meetings with the steering group and specialists so that better engagement could have been achieved earlier and helped produce a more conclusive end report.
Arwain Sir Benfro and the LEADER Programme concluded in December 2021 once all projects were completed and funding exhausted. There is now no dedicated support upon the completion of the LEADER Programme in Pembrokeshire. Should you have any queries, PLANED as the previous administrators, may be able to assist, or similarly for wider questions on the LEADER Programme in Wales, please contact the Wales European Funding Office (WEFO).