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Business springs into life over Easter holidays

By mbarber  |  Posted: April 16, 2014

DCCI chief executive Ian Girling

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Businesses are being urged to help to make it a bumper Easter in Dorset as the economy springs into life.

Dorset Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which represents 700 members employing 37,000 people, said the county needs to send an upbeat message that it is open for business.

Chief executive Ian Girling urged companies in tourism and retail to seize the opportunity to kickstart the season as visitors and day-trippers head to Dorset.

The upbeat message comes as fine weather arrived after months of storms and rain – and as the indicators show the economy gaining pace.

Mr Girling said: "This is another opportunity to really start driving the local economy forward after the heavy rains and floods which affected some businesses so badly earlier this year.

"We have benefited from fine weather so far during the Easter break and this should draw even more visitors, including daytrippers and last-minute bookings.

"Dorset is one of the premier destinations in the country. We need to be ready, and give the very best impression of Dorset so visitors will enjoy their time here, spend more and come back again."

The hopes for an Easter bounce come as key indicators show the economy continuing to improve as we enter the second quarter of the year.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently upgraded its UK economic growth forecast to 2.9 per cent for 2014 - echoing the positive outlook in the Budget when the figure was placed at 2.7 per cent.

The British Chambers of Commerce has also reported that export orders and sales for Britain's service companies have reached a record high.

Its Quarterly Economic Survey showed that the economy is continuing to grow and will remain strong in the short-term as manufacturing and service sector imports leap forward.

Latest figures from Visit Dorset estimate that the total visitor spend from staying UK and overseas visitors is £807 million a year.

Its visitor surveys also show a total of 26,640,000 day visits with a total visitor spend of £843million.

The tourism body says that tourism is directly responsible from some 32,565 jobs.

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