Open for Business: Promoting tourism in the central Chilterns (2020-2023)

Open for Business: Promoting tourism in the central Chilterns (2020-2023)

Open for Business is a three year tourism programme in the central Chilterns led by the Chilterns Conservation Board, with some key partners including the Chilterns Tourism Network and Visit Buckinghamshire.

It is funded by the HS2 Business and Local Economy Fund and aims to maintain and build a vibrant visitor economy in the Central Chilterns.

The programme includes a series of festivals and events, a communications programme and other initiatives to drive footfall to the area. The programme continues until 2023 and you can read about what we’ve done so far below.

Summary progress reports

icon August 2020 to 31 January 2022

icon February-July 2020

Including our response to the Covid pandemic – Shop Local, Virtual Visiting, new Social Distance friendly walks.

icon September 2019 to February 2020

The first six months of the project.

icon February to July 2023

Includes launch of the revitalised Chess Valley Walk and the River Chess Discovery Day.

B2B Experiential Rural Tourism workshops

The presentation from the Experience maker webinar on 10 January can be downloaded below, as well as the recorded Zoom webinar.

Experiential Tourism: follow-on Business Support

The workshops were part of a wider initiative to promote Experiential tourism, including free 1:1 business support for a limited number of companies, to help you develop, distribute and market your experiences. This support will be delivered by tourism consultant Deborah Brookes. In addition a number of new experience-based visitor itineraries are being developed in the central Chilterns by tourism specialist Mary Tebje. To find out how you can get involved and benefit from free marketing contact Annette or see the Experience marketing plan below.

Chilterns Walking Festivals

The Festivals run twice a year (in May and October) with a 15 day programme of 90+ guided walks giving walkers the chance to meet the artists, craftspeople, farmers, food producers, countryside rangers, archaeologists, historians and storytellers of the Chilterns.

‘Open for Business’ will develop many more walks in the central Chilterns area linking in with local businesses. Find out more about the Walking Festival and be the first to know when the programme goes live.

Could you offer a tour or tasting as part of the event? This will help promote your business and add value to the walks. We would love to work with you to create some unbeatable experiences showcasing the best of the area.

Summary report for Oct 2022 Festival

Celebration of Chilterns Food & Drink, Autumn 2023

This foodie celebration will showcase the region’s impressive and ever-growing range of distilleries, breweries, farm shops, cafes, pubs, restaurants and other independent local food and drink producers. It will take in multiple locations and venues in the central Chilterns. We are working on this now, watch this space for further details!

Chilterns ANOB

Promoting Film and TV tourism

We have been working with Visit Buckinghamshire to help promote the new Midsomer Trail, a self-guided tour travelling along the Misbourne Valley, highlighting the most popular filming locations in the central Chilterns, and taking in many visitor attractions and hospitality businesses along the way. We have promoted a series of Midsomer on the Misbourne walks and tours as part of the last three Chilterns Walking Festivals.

Midsomer on the Misbourne

Networking events, business engagement and training

These will take place throughout the programme. The next workshops will be focusing on how to develop and promote bookable tourism experiences, to reach new audiences and generate additional footfall. Contact Annette for details

For more information about the project please contact tel 01844 355500

Contact and information

Chilterns ANOB

Annette Weiss

Role: Head of Engagement and Partnerships
Chilterns ANOB
Chilterns ANOB

Bookable experiences

We have carefully chosen our most immersive and memorable Chilterns Countryside Experiences to share with you here. Choose from Active Countryside, Chilterns Food & Drink, Countryside Learning and Chilterns Sightseeing. All are bookable online.
Chilterns ANOB

Visit the Chilterns

Quintessential English countryside, an impressive selection of pubs and restaurants, and historic market towns, the Chilterns AONB has it all.