Impacts of Tourism in Swanage

Impacts of Tourism in Swanage

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Impacts of Tourism in Swanage

Tourism has the potential to create impacts on the environment and
communities that it relies on to accommodate visitors. Its impacts are
mitigated by the long history of tourism activity. Communities have
become used to tourism activity, and management measures to limit some
areas of environmental damage have been implemented. Nevertheless,
some impacts are far ranging, and they are set out below:

* Inappropriate Development

An increase in visitors can lead to pressure for new developments to
serve and capitilise on their needs, eg. Caravan parks, visitor
centres, cafes, signs, car parks, and additional accommodation.
Problems can arise if these facilities are out of keeping with the
setting or when local residents feel they are an unnecessary addition
to the area.

* Overcrowding

Overcrowding can occur when the number of people at a particular site
or location exceeds the capacity of the place to handle them. This is
generally a seasonal problem.

* Wear and Tear

Visitors can cause physical damage to the coastal area without
realising it. Much of the damage is unintentional, such as at Lulworth
where the path between the Cove and Durdle Door is eroding due to the
volume of visitors using it through the summer months. In this case
the Weld Estate, Countryside Commission and Purbeck District Council
have joined together to pay for the path to be resurfaced, in order to
prevent further erosion. Elsewhere it is not always clear who should
shoulder the burden of repair and maintenance costs.

* Transport

Tourism is a major generator of traffic within Dorset. Whilst the
conurbation can be reached by public transport, elsewhere the main
form of travel is by car which is likely to continue for the
foreseeable future. Almost 80% of visitors use their cars to travel to
destinations once they reach the county.

* Traffic Congestion

In the peak summer months, congestion in the county can be a major
problem. Roads such as the A351 through Corfe Castle to Swanage and

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Studland and the A35 can become very congested, often with traffic
jams occurring at peak times, such as in the morning or evening when
people are travelling to and from attractions. On many coastal routes,
the summer flow of traffic may be three or four times the annual

average daily flow. Although most visitors travel by car, a sizeable
amount arrive in Dorset as part of organised coach tours. Although
this has a positive side as there

are fewer cars to deal with, narrow streets and tight corners in towns
such as Swanage pose problems.

* Car Parking

Many car parks in the county are geared towards visitor parking in the
peak months, therefore a high proportion remain virtually unused
outside of the main

season. In certain areas car parks can be visually intrusive and may
reduce the enjoyment of the site. In busy periods conflicts many arise
between the

parking needs of local residents and of visitors. In areas such as
Swanage, parking ideally situated for shopping is often used by
visitors staying in the resort for most of the day, despite long stay
car parking being available elsewhere.

* Local Conflicts

Some of the issues arising as a result of visitor presence in the
area, can further increase local resentment. Traffic congestion and
inappropriate can cause resentment

and local opposition. The sheer number of visitors can overwhelm
residents in areas, which have a high visitor presence for some of the
year. In certain areas

along the coast holiday homes can account for up to 20 % of the
accommodation stock. Additional conflict can occur as a result of
visitor vandalism or anti-social behaviour and seasonal price
increases in resort areas.
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