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Production of a framework and baseline for monitoring and evaluating the impact of the rural tourism measures of the Rural Economy Growth Review - RE0272

Description
This project was created to develop a baseline and monitoring and evaluation framework to measure the impact of five rural tourism measures identified under the Rural Economy Growth Review (REGR) known as the Rural Tourism Package (RTP).

The RTP was announced in November 2011. It was designed in response to the Government’s wider Growth Review and recognition that tourism is a key sector that drives economic growth, particularly in rural areas. The RTP was designed to develop and promote rural tourism in England to stimulate growth in rural economies and help businesses reach their full potential. The RTP is part of the Government’s wider response and drive to maximise tourism’s contribution to the economy and the industry’s government backed aspiration to achieve 5% year on year growth in the value of the tourism sector up to 2020.

This baseline and monitoring and evaluation framework has been designed to inform and guide future monitoring and final impact evaluation of the RTP. It outlines the evidence required to assess the effectiveness of the RTP measures and the results will be used to inform future policy considerations. The monitoring and evaluation framework will also inform the work of a number of partner organisations such as VisitEngland in their review of the rural tourism activity in the Strategic Framework; the National Association of AONBs; and the work of both Defra and DCMS in supporting and developing tourism, particularly in rural areas.

The requirement
To develop a baseline and monitoring and evaluation framework to measure the impact of the RTP. The objectives of this commission were to develop a practical and consistent approach to:

• Assess the delivery progress of the RTP;
• Quantify the impacts and achievements of RTP in terms of:
increased jobs in rural areas and an indication of the nature of those jobs; casual, part-time, permanent, apprenticeships;
new business start-ups and expansion of SMEs in rural areas;
number of visits to rural areas and visitor spend both during peak holiday periods and out of season;
multiplier effects to rural businesses and the wider national economy;
wider community benefits in rural areas e.g. improved viability of local services, preservation/development of heritage sites;
key sectors which have benefited e.g. food and drink, agriculture, leisure industry, hotels and hospitality, business/conference venues;
the on-going sustainability of any trends in visitor numbers and visitor spend, including where visitors travel from and distance travelled; and
environmental impacts such as reductions or increases in resource use (water, energy) that are associated with the measures.
• Generating lessons and insights on what works to encourage rural tourism and growth.
The monitoring and evaluation framework has been commissioned to develop a set of baseline indicators for the above outcomes and propose a methodology for data collection and evaluation with an assessment of possible evaluation methodologies.
Objective
The objective for this monitoring and evaluation framework is to develop and deliver a practical and consistent approach to:
•assessing the delivery progress of REGR rural tourism related measures
•quantifying impacts and achievements of these measures, in terms of :
o increased jobs in rural areas and an indication of the nature of those jobs; casual, part-time, permanent, apprenticeships etc,
o New business start-ups and expansion of SMEs in rural areas.
o Increased visits to rural areas and increased visitor spend.
o Changes in the seasonality of visits and progress towards a year round offer.
o Local multiplier effects,
o Wider community benefits in rural areas e.g. improved viability of local services, preservation/development of heritage sites etc)
o Key sectors which have benefited e.g. food and drink, agriculture, leisure industry, hotels and hospitality, business/conference venues.
o The ongoing sustainability of any trends in visitor numbers and visitor spend.
•generating lessons and insights on what works
Project Documents
• FRP - Final Report : Rural Tourism Framework - Final Report   (8009k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2013

To: 2014

Cost: £66,850
Contractor / Funded Organisations
URS Infrastructure and Environment UK, Ltd
Keywords
Rural Issues              
Fields of Study
Rural Affairs