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See the sights without the crowds - #SightseeCrowdFree

Tue, 11/08/2020

The City Council is launching the initiative - called #SightSeeCrowdFree - with the inducement to visit attractions with queues down to just a couple of minutes’ wait.

To reinforce the message, a major marketing campaign is running on twitter and Instagram with short films shot around iconic sights and interviews of families and visitors enjoying the best of the West End without the crush. The same message is being supported by the West End’s major retailers. The campaign will also target commuters from outer home counties areas.

The initiative runs until the end of September and is being badged as a time-limited officer - “get Westminster to yourself and don’t wait for the crowds to return”.

Cllr Rachael Robathan, leader of Westminster City Council, said: “Numbers are still low but are steadily returning, and we see that trend intensifying when the peak holiday period ends and office workers return in increasing numbers in September.

“We believe this is a historic window to see one of the most famous cities on earth without the normal crowds - you have room to view and no queue.  People in foreign cities will often pay extra to get up early to go on private tours to dodge the crowds - in Westminster you have a chance to do that for free before the crowds return in the autumn.

“The temporary closures of large numbers of streets to allow temporary tables and chairs mean you can dine al fresco for the next few weeks.”

The West End’s visitor offer includes:

  • minimal queues at most major attractions
  • low levels of traffic
  • 11km of new cyclepaths to enjoy the  City on two wheels
  • 19000 sq m of extra pavement space
  • al fresco dining in major tourist areas like Soho, Chinatown and Mayfair - with dozens of new temporary outdoor eating areas

The digital campaign will encourage users to take Instagram moments at key attractions and post them under the #SightSeeCrowdFree banner.

The #SightSeeCrowdFree will lead into Inside Out, an arts festival being planned for Westminster in October which will see free street art an installations in iconic locations.

Last updated: 11 August 2020