A HOST of celebrities have backed a campaign to encourage people to visit Cumbria for staycations.

David Hasselhoff, TV presenter Helen Skelton and actress Anna Friel are among just three of the high-profile names to contribute to a new Cumbria Tourism initiative to inspire visits to the Lake District.

Other familiar faces getting behind the new celebrity endorsement campaign range from TV personality and regular visitor Julia Bradbury, comedian and resident Jon Richardson, and Olympic and Great North Swim competitor Cassie Patten.

The initiative is part of Cumbria Tourism’s recovery marketing campaign to help tourism and hospitality businesses affected by over £1.5billion lost income due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Following months of closure and just a few short weeks left of summer trading, thousands of tourism jobs in the county are at risk, so the performance of the industry during the autumn and winter months this year will be all the more critical.

To help launch the campaign, Cumbria Tourism has called on an array of well-known faces across different walks of life and invited them to show their love for Cumbria by sharing their own personal messages.

The celebrity messages will be shared with Cumbria Tourism’s social media audience in the coming weeks, with each celebrity asked to share them on their own channels to promote the region.

Managing director of Cumbria Tourism, Gill Haigh, said: “We all know this is a special place but with so many well-known faces sharing that passion it’s great to hear their insights and genuine love or connection with the county.

“The messages have been a joy to read and we can’t wait to share them with our potential visitors, particularly those who missed their holidays here during lockdown.

"Our awe-inspiring landscape has so much to offer."