Who could have failed to notice that the remains of Richard III were reinterred over the weekend? This has been a massive boost for local tourism with the streets being packed with visitors from near and far. With this in mind, many businesses got behind the event offering special products aimed at making the weekend even more special for the Richard III enthusiasts and for some places they noticed as much as a double their usual takings at the end of the weekend. While it is undoubtedly true this was a one off event that won’t be replicated, the benefits of having Richard III in Leicester could mean increased tourism for years to come.
Although it is possible to know how tourism will be effected by having his remains at the Cathedral, it is likely that he will be an ‘attraction’ that continues to draw people from all over the world. In lieu of this, there are certain things that businesses could do to ensure that they are ready for when someone comes in who is interested in his story.
Firstly, brush up on the local history and key facts about Richard. I’m not saying that you need to swallow an encyclopaedia of everything to do with Leicester and Richard but just learn a few key dates and a little of the history of Leicester and the Battle of Bosworth etc. so that when you start a conversation with someone you are able to share with them some of what you know and get them excited to be somewhere so significant in the course of history.
If you run a restaurant or café etc. then why not create one item on the menu that’s in some way connected to Richard III? Even if it’s just named after something associated with him such as ‘Bosworth burger’ or such like. This could be a nice novelty for someone who has travelled to see him if they are able to have a meal that just rounds off their historic day nicely.
Given the fact that the queues to view him have been so long that it would take the people at the back 2 hours to get to see him, and even at that point people were still joining the end, it really would make sense for businesses to keep the buzz alive for those who will be coming once the main celebrations are out of the way. Just these couple of things could make someone’s visit to Leicester a memorable one, but equally, isn’t too over bearing for those living there!