Theme park bucks trend

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A children’s theme park chain bucked the tourism trend by celebrating one of its best ever Christmas periods after a strong 2013.

Gulliver’s, which owns Gulliver’s Kingdom in Matlock Bath, had its best Christmas since 2009 and second best of all time after three consecutive years of enduring more modest winter visitors numbers in bad weather conditions. Bookings for Christmas 2013 were up by 21 per cent compared to the previous year’s figures.

Bosses believe the more favourable weather combined with its value family budget-driven offering are behind its successful 2013.

Dean Kimberley, of Gulliver’s, said: “We had one of our best summers ever last year thanks to the mild weather making us more accessible, which continued through the winter, so coupled with us constantly adding new attractions this meant the visitors kept coming all year-round.

“Customers are much more price-savvy nowadays so rather than ‘too good to be true’ offers they’re seeking great value all year round which is exactly what we give them.”