A group of people standing on deck of a Thames Sailing Barge and waving to the camera.

Visit Essex is to here to help tourism, leisure and hospitality businesses to succeed

Visit Essex is a public private tourism partnership supported by the key tourism businesses across the county, including the unitary authorities of Southend and Thurrock, the county council as well as district and borough councils.


We are thinking of all our fellow leisure and hospitality businesses at this very difficult time. We understand that the tourism industry has been hit hard by COVID-19 and will continue to be so for the unforeseeable future. 

The Visit Essex team are continuing to work remotely and are still contactable via email - please get in touch with the team to talk through the impacts on your business and ways we can help.

To our members, we will be sending out regular newsletters, keeping you up-to-date with all the latest information as and when we receive it. We will also trial live updates via facebook live. We are currently planning campaigns for when normal life resumes to welcome people back to Essex and encourage locals to support the tourism businesses on their doorstep. These campaigns may look different to the ones we had been planning.

We know you have had to make some extremely difficult decisions and that this is a turbulent time. We are all in this together and you have our support.

The situation is fast moving. For up-to-date information please use the links below. If you need any assistance on business support please email Essex County Council. 

The tourism industry across England always shows strength in coming together in a time of crisis and we in Essex are no exception. I hope we can support one another to get through this crisis and prepare to welcome visitors near and far once normality resumes.

Kind Regards,
Lisa and the Visit Essex team

Working together for Essex


Tourism is a key economic driver for the Essex economy. Visit Essex’s core aim is to raise the value of tourism to Essex by promoting day trips and short breaks, and ensuring we have a compelling visitor offer that generates income for the county. We do this by being the shop window for Essex tourism businesses, maintaining a high profile for the county through our digital presence, collaborating with travel intermediaries and encouraging collaboration generally between tourism stakeholders, challenging outdated perceptions and being an advocate for high quality products and services with a warm visitor welcome. 

The Visit Essex board consists of a team of tourism professionals with a variety of industry experience who work closely with us and together for the greater good of tourism in Essex. Visit Essex is a membership organisation with a range of levels of engagement, so contact us to find out how you can become involved. We can help you up-skill at one of our regular training workshops, meet other tourism businesses at our popular networking events, or have access to market intelligence and industry updates at our annual tourism conference. For more information about membership and how to work with us, please contact Cheryl Owen, Major Accounts & Sponsorship Lead, by email or by telephone on: +44 (0) 33301 30106. 

June Members Virtual meeting

Download the latest update on our marketing plans from Visit Essex presented by Lisa Bone at our recent virtual members meeting.

Layer Marney Tower

Regrettably we are postponing our 2020 annual conference which was due to take place on 21 April and plan to now host it in the Autumn.

Picture of a person holding an open folder but only the folder is showing.

Visit Essex commission annually market intelligence to help the you keep up-to-date with the latest research carried out.

Picture of a brown tourism sign for Hylands House.
Find out more about the process of obtaining brown tourism signs. What criteria you need to comply with, the cost and the overall process. 

European Funding - PROFIT

Visit Essex is now working on the INTERREG 2 SEAS PROFIT project which aims to grow the economy of our coastal destinations by creating conditions that enable and stimulate cross-border SMEs to be innovative. This support will lead to the development of new products, service and technology solutions that meet the need of visitors, making the region more competitive and the businesses more profitable.

The partners working with Visit Essex include Westtoer (Belgium), Visit Kent (UK), Pas de Calais Tourisme (France), International Social Tourism Organisation (Belgium), Chamber of Commerce Opal Coast (France), HZ University of Applied Sciences (Netherlands) and Impuls Zeeland (Netherlands).

Interreg is a European funding initiative founded in 1989 with the aim of supporting cross-border, transnational and inter-regional co-operation between different European Member States. The Interreg programmes have been and will continue to be a key vehicle for local authorities and organisations to work with EU partners on projects of common interest.

The first activity has looked at determining the local identity of the Essex coastline using Southend as a pilot area. The results can be found here.