People in the North East are being called on to vote in a competition that could see the region showcased to millions of visitors.
The North East is competing against the North West, Northern Ireland and the Midlands to win £1m worth of free advertising at Heathrow Airport.
The competition will be decided by a public vote with an image of each region being displayed on Heathrow Airport’s Facebook page. The North East is being represented by an image of Hadrian’s Wall, with the other regions having pictures of the Lake District, the Giant’s Causeway and Anne Hathaway’s Cottage in Stratford-upon-Avon.
The North East Chamber of Commerce is calling on businesses and individuals to back the region in the contest. People can vote for the North East by going to www.facebook.com/HeathrowAirport .
The chamber’s chief executive James Ramsbotham said: “NECC and our members have been seeking to raise awareness of the many Great Reasons there are to live, work and invest here in the North East and this competition is an excellent way of energising that campaign.
“The picture of Hadrian’s Wall at Housesteads is truly beautiful, but of course what we in the region know is that we have countless spots of equal beauty and many others with just as much historical or cultural significance. Nevertheless, Hadrian’s Wall as captured takes some beating and is a very special place indeed – we are confident it will help to do the North East proud.
“What we must now do – each and every one of us – is mobilise as many votes as we can to ensure that the North East wins. That way we can win the chance to showcase many others parts of our region and ultimately attract investors and visitors to this often under-sold part of Great Britain.
“We urge anyone who has a spare moment to visit the Heathrow Facebook page in order to vote to ensure that we seize this valuable opportunity to sell our great region within the bustle of one of the world’s busiest airports.”
The public have two weeks to vote for their chosen region, simply by ‘Liking’ the corresponding image. The competition will close just before midnight on August 4. The winning region will have four advertisements showing its breadth and beauty shown across digital screens in all terminals at Heathrow from the end of August until the end of November.
Around 13m passengers a year already use Heathrow as their gateway to Britain’s regions.
Tourism Minister Helen Grant said: “Our tourism industry helps us sell the country to the world and is contributing to our long-term economic plan.
With 13m passengers using the airport every year, Heathrow is the ideal place to showcase the wonderful tourism offer in the UK.
“I would urge people to get involved and back their region to help decide which stunning images are chosen to be displayed in such a prime location.”
Joss Croft, marketing director at VisitBritain, said: “The aim of this advertising is to encourage our international visitors to explore different regions of Britain.
Home to Durham Cathedral and bustling Newcastle, the North East received 431,000 international visits in 2013. If it wins this competition, the region will be showcased in all its glory to millions of travellers passing through Heathrow.”