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Press releases


30th Mar 2009

The British countryside is world renowned for its stunning, scenic natural beauty. It is often described as the 'Jewels of England' and for millions of International tourists, rural Britain is a sight to behold. However this view is not shared by modern Britons. A new leisure report out today has revealed over half of the nation thinks visiting the British countryside is boring as there is nothing to do or see there.

Travelodge polled 3,000 Britons to find out their views about visiting the British countryside and test their knowledge on the Countryside Code. Findings revealed despite recession proof Brits searching far and wide for low cost deals, 53% of adults are disregarding the UK's greatest free attraction - the countryside. Reasons given included being a bore and not having the fun factor.

The report found five million adults would rather stay indoors and play with their Wii than take an exhilarating trip outdoors. Also its not just adults who feel the countryside is dreary as the survey stated a fifth of British children find natures playground unexciting too.

For a third of the nation, the idea of taking a trip to the British countryside has not even crossed their mind.

John Tribe, Professor of Tourism from University of Surrey commented on the findings; "It is alarming news that over half of the nation thinks the British countryside is boring and there is nothing to do or see there. Maybe this is because in the last decade Britons have preferred to holiday abroad and as a result; they have forgotten the UK is abundant with great rural holiday locations."

"Now is the time to get back to basics and appreciate the best things in life are free. Rural Britain is full of free things to do and see; it's just a matter of using your imagination. With the recession hitting home and the weak pound, 2009 is the perfect year to rediscover destination UK."

Guy Parsons, UK Travelodge Managing Director, said: "Our research highlights just how vital it is for the Government to invest in domestic tourism. It's obvious Britons have forgotten what great free rural attractions are available on their doorstep and we need to address this problem quickly."

"To help Brits rediscover the great free rural attractions Great Britain has to offer, Travelodge is offering over half a million, 19 and 29 rooms in rural locations across the UK. In addition we have created a free online guide to help Britons rediscover rural Britain the free way".

To book a 19 or 29 Travelodge Saver room or to download the 'See Rural Britain The Free Way Guide' visit: The guide can be found in the 'News & Offers' section and includes highlights:

The UK's seven national gems that are a must see

Where the Areas of National Beauty (AONB) are located across the UK

Where you can find Britain's National Parks

Details on Long Distance Footpaths for walking breaks

Details on The Countryside Code

List of games that can be played outdoors

Sandie Dawe, Deputy CEO of VisitBritain, said: "Britain's countryside is far from boring and we have some of the most famous landscapes from the picturesque Cotswolds to the spectacular views of the Lake District that draw visitors from around the world. With more Britons considering a holiday at home this year, its a great time to get back to nature and get reacquainted with rural Britain. The last decade has seen a rise in competition and it is important to remind Brits on what they are missing out on and what a great free attraction the countryside is".

The study also tested the respondents knowledge of the Countryside Code and findings revealed only 17% of adults admitted they knew the British Countryside Code. Over a third of the nation (37%) did not know that a Countryside Code even exists. Twenty four cent of respondents thought they had the right to pick wild flowers in the countryside (when they don't). One in ten adults thought it was safe to eat all berries and fungus they found growing in the countryside.

When asked what right, a Farmer has if he thinks its livestock is being injured or being worried by a pet dog - 60% of respondents said the Farmer could report the owner to the police. Only 25% got the correct answer - the Farmer could destroy the dog.

Surprisingly 68% of respondents would not even bother reading up on the Countryside Code before visiting a UK rural location.

Travelodge also challenged the respondents to identify common flowers / trees and animals that can be found in the British countryside and key findings revealed:

Thirty two per cent of Brits had difficulty identifying a Pheasant

Twenty two per cent of respondents could not identify a Hare. One in ten adults thought it was a Deer.

Twelve per cent of adults thought a Stag was a Reindeer.

One in ten adults could not identify a sheep.

Forty two per cent of Brits could not identify an Otter.

A fifth of adults could not identify a Weasel.

Eighty three per cent of adults could not identify the common Bluebell flower.

Forty four per cent of respondents could not identify the popular Oak tree.

Seventy four cent of Brits could not identify a Horse Chestnut tree.

Seventy one per cent of respondents could not identify a Pine tree.

Popular Travelodge Destinations