Ripon set to make history as north’s smallest city blows the horn for Yorkshire at the World Travel Market

On the evening of November 6, Ripon is set to make history in London when its historic Hornblower “calls the watch” over the River Thames for the first time in its one-thousand-year tradition.
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The special dispensation, agreed by Ripon City Council, marks North Yorkshire’s inaugural joint initiative to journey south to meet the world at the World Travel Market – one of the travel industry’s most globally significant annual trade events, taking place at Excel London from November 6-8.

As part of this, North Yorkshire Council, together with Visit York, Visit Leeds and Herriot Country Tourism, will be jointly hosting a special event on board City Cruises’ flagship vessel Erasmus.

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Representatives from the Yorkshire and world travel industry have been personally invited to get “All Aboard for Yorkshire” and learn more about the world-class combination of vibrant city culture and stunningly beautiful locations to be found across the wider York and North Yorkshire area.

Pictured: Ripon Hornblower Allison Clark with fellow Hornblower Wayne Cobbett.Pictured: Ripon Hornblower Allison Clark with fellow Hornblower Wayne Cobbett.
Pictured: Ripon Hornblower Allison Clark with fellow Hornblower Wayne Cobbett.

North Yorkshire Council’s executive member for the visitor economy, Coun Derek Bastiman, said: “The visitor economy is a major contributor to North Yorkshire’s economy, bringing in more than £1.5 billion a year and attracting over 33 million visitors from domestic visits alone to the county.

“The coming together of the tourism teams from across North Yorkshire, and with our ambition to become a York and North Yorkshire LVEP (Local Visitor Economy Partnership), we can grow the visitor economy even further by attracting international audiences.

“The North Yorkshire offer is already world class with two national parks, a breath-taking coastline, a world heritage site, and the great northern treasure houses such as Castle Howard.

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“Now, more than ever, with internationally acclaimed literature, film and TV series such as All Creatures Great and Small showcasing our countryside, town and city settings to global audiences, we can work together to attend events such as the World Travel Market to welcome the international inbound travel industry to the north and boost the county’s visitor economy.

“I am extremely proud of our heritage and having a Hornblower from our area sound the horn over the River Thames for the first time in over a thousand years is quite the honour.”

Gemma Rio, head of tourism at North Yorkshire Council, said: “We are on a mission, along with partners across the region, to broadcast the message to the global travel industry, to look, and book, ‘up north’!

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“The 1,137 year-old nightly ritual of the Ripon Hornblower, which legendarily began in 886AD to warn locals that the Vikings - or Northmen - were coming, seems a fitting tribute.

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“In the cathedral city of just 19,000 inhabitants, a horn has been blown from every corner of the marketplace at 9pm every night, without exception for over a thousand years – and still is.

“The Ripon Hornblower, a long-held and uninterrupted tradition, epitomises the kind of authentic experience still to be found in towns and cities across the county, which set us apart on the world stage.”