Published: 10:53, 27 May 2009
| Updated: 12:07, 27 May 2009
Visitor numbers at Canterbury Cathedral soared to record levels over the Bank Holiday weekend.
The 25 per cent leap from last year is the biggest ever recorded. Staff say a combination of good weather and the school holidays have helped.
Head of visitor services Therese Heslop is delighted with the surge in numbers.
She said: "A rise like this is unheard of before and we’re definitely seeing more foreign visitors than we did this time last year.
"Working in the tourism trade can be a bit like a yo-yo effect, one week you’re up and the next it’s down, but fingers crossed, we look set to have a good year."
She added: "The city is looking fresh and in bloom, so we think that’s putting across a good feeling to everyone who comes through the precincts.
"After all, we offer a visitor attraction like no other, as we are a living and working church and that’s what makes us really special."
Audio: Therese Heslop, head of visitor services, explains why the numbers are up
Numbers are expected to be good once again this weekend when the cathedral gardens are opened to the public.
The day offers a chance to visit five separate gardens, all set within the cathedral grounds, including the Archdeaconry and Deanery gardens.
Craft stalls and teas will also be available.
For more information, visit the Cathedral website www.canterbury-cathedral.org