Visitor numbers for April show London’s resilience as a tourist destination

British Museum

Visit London today announced that visitor numbers to the capital's attractions fell by just 3.2% compared with the same period in 2009. These results were achieved despite the ongoing recession and the fact that disruption caused by the volcanic ash affected a full week of the trading month.

While some of the bigger attractions did see a dip in attendance, there was good news elsewhere. Almost half (44%) of attractions reported improvements in attendances compared with April 2009, while small attractions* saw a 9% surge in visitors, and free attractions in the small sector reported a spike of 25%.

Sally Chatterjee, CEO, Visit London said: 'Many people had expected these figures to be far worse. It says a lot about the appeal of London that visitor numbers are holding up so well despite all the challenges the capital’s attractions are facing at the moment.'

The first three months of 2010 saw visitor numbers dip by only 1% compared with the same period last year.

All figures come from Visit London’s London Attraction Monitor, a monthly survey of 34 London attractions. During April 2010 a total of 3.52 million people visited these attractions.

Notes to Editors

The research is based on a sample of 34 attractions: Churchill Museum & Cabinet Rooms, Kew Gardens, London Dungeon, London Eye, Madame Tussauds, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, St Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Tower of London, Hampton Court, Wellington Arch, Old Royal Naval College, Museum in Docklands, Florence Nightingale Museum, Guildhall Art Gallery, Museum of Rugby, Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum, Imperial War Museum, Royal Observatory, Greenwich National Maritime Museum, V&A Museum, V&A Museum of Childhood, Tate Britain, Tate Modern, British Museum, Museum of London, National Gallery, National Portrait Gallery, RAF Museum, Science Museum, HMS Belfast, Queen’s House, V&A Blythe House, National Army Museum, Geffrye Museum, Museum of Freemasonry

Results of the research showed that the number of people visiting the above attractions during April 2010 was 3.52 million. Please note that these figures are based on the survey and therefore represent the total attendance to the sample 34 attractions surveyed.  They do not represent the total actual attendance in all London attractions.

*Small attractions are defined as those receiving fewer than 250,000 visitors per year. Large attractions are defined as those receiving more than 250,000 per year.