The Victorian Coalition Government has formed a series of partnerships designed to deliver an innovative show garden at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower show in London to generate tourism to Victoria.
Minister for Tourism and Major Events Louise Asher said the government had joined forces with the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, Tourism Northern Territory, Qantas Australia and UK tour operator Trailfinders to present the Essence of Australia show garden.
“Collaborating with these experienced and highly reputable organisations allows us to maximise our partners’ networks to promote the great variety of Victorian tourism products on offer to the UK market,” Ms Asher said.
The Essence of Australia garden will showcase the landscapes of Victoria and the Northern Territory celebrating Australia’s love of the outdoors.
“The design also reinforces Melbourne as Australia’s most cosmopolitan, contemporary and artistic city,” Ms Asher said.
“Designed by Jim Fogarty, who created the winning garden at Chelsea Flower Show in 2011, the Essence of Australia celebrates the flora located at the multi-award winning Australian Garden at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Cranbourne.
“The garden will embody the stylish and exciting city experience together with the classical outback Australian iconic experience.
“This presents an exciting opportunity to work with the Northern Territory to promote complementary tourism offerings to the UK market.”
The campaign to promote tourism to Victoria will run until July. It will include print advertorial and editorial content, integration into partner marketing platforms, tactical advertising, and a dedicated 16-page newspaper supplement in the UK Telegraph newspaper.
A dedicated public relations campaign will also support this activity with BBC Hampton Court broadcasts hosted by a UK garden expert, Joe Swift, during the show.
Ms Asher said tourism is a significant economic driver for Victoria, worth $19.1 billion a year or 5.8 per cent of the total Victorian economy.
“The tourism industry provides jobs for more than 200,000 Victorians and contributes seven per cent of employment in tourism and other industries,” Ms Asher said.
“Tourism from the UK has grown by 11 per cent over the past year with almost 204,000 UK visitors staying in Victoria.
“The UK travel market continues to be an important market for Victoria. Visitors from the UK spend more time travelling throughout regional Victoria, staying on average 21 nights, spending around $322 million in Victoria per year,” Ms Asher said.