I’ve been fortunate enough in my career to travel to a lot of interesting and impressive places but each time I visit somewhere new it reinforces to me how lucky we are to live and work in the East Riding.
Thousands upon thousands of people come to our beautiful part of the world every year to sample the delights of the East Riding coast, country, towns and villages – generating hundreds of millions of pounds for the tourism economy – but we can enjoy the benefits every day.
Take Bridlington, for example. I can’t think of any seaside towns which can compete with its offer in terms of natural beauty and fantastic attractions.
We have not one but three jewels in our crown with Bridlington Spa, Sewerby Hall and Gardens and East Riding Leisure Bridlington. What a trio of top-class venues!
The leisure centre is a £25 million state-of-the-art facility which has been a huge success since opening in May last year and Sewerby Hall and Gardens continues to attract thousands of visitors each year to enjoy its facilities and wide range of events for all the family.
But I want to focus on Bridlington Spa in this column, to stress the full extent of its benefits, which not everyone might be aware of.
Not only is Bridlington Spa one of the region’s most iconic cultural venues, it is directly and indirectly responsible for putting millions of pounds into the local economy.
Its flexibility and versatility as a venue means it can host a widely-varied programme, from concerts, theatre shows and festivals to sport, business, awards and conference events.
That is why it was an integral part of the start of the Tour de Yorkshire again this year and why it was the perfect location for The Business Day, a very successful event in June attended by business leaders from across the region.
The Spa is one of the cornerstones of Bridlington’s ongoing regeneration and transformation as a leading all-year-round destination and it is something I think the whole town should be proud of.
Local cafes, hotels and other businesses all reap the rewards of the Spa’s success, which has the effect of creating and sustaining employment in the town.
The team at the Spa are some of the most dedicated and talented in the industry and work extremely hard to make sure every event is meticulously planned and delivered.
Its theatre not only stages shows but also produces its own works, such as this summer’s Myths and Legends, and this aspect helps to promote the venue in the wider arts and culture world, particularly helpful in this most special of cultural years for the region.
We’re extremely lucky to have such a venue in Bridlington and I really would encourage anyone who hasn’t been for a while to treat themselves to a visit for some world-class entertainment and a lovely meal with a wonderful view in the refurbished café.
Whether it’s a show, a concert, an upcoming musical or the panto, you’ll be in for a great day or night out.
Oh yes you will!