Published: 3:22 PM 9/9/2014
Could UFOs help bring tourists to Scarborough?
Over the past century, Scarborough’s tourism trade has been dominated by holidaymakers hell-bent on fish, chips and seafront strolls.
But if Scarborough Council wants visitors to keep flocking to the coast, it should put less emphasis on buckets and spades - and instead focus on little green men.
That’s at least the view of local alien hunter Russ Kellett, who feels the authority is missing out on the “goldmine” that is UFO tourism.
He claims the borough is a hotbed for close encounters, and in paranormal circles, is as synonymous with flying saucers as it is with donkey rides.
“There’s more going on with UFOs in Scarborough than in Roswell,” said Filey’s Russ, who claims he was once abducted by wetsuit-clad 9 ft. aliens.
“We have some really famous UFO sightings around here, and if I was the council I would have banners up saying ‘Welcome to the British UFO capital’.”
Several American extraterrestrial hotspots have recently begun peddling UFO tourism to stargazers in a bid to bring in extra revenue.
While it’s currently an alien concept to tourism boards in this country, Mr. Kellett feels it could prove lucrative should the council pursue it.
And with the authority’s recent tourism roadmap revealing an extra three million visitors a year are wanted in Scarborough over the next decade, the man behind that report said he will “look at anything” if it benefits the borough.
And Cllr David Chance feels it raises a legitimate point that the council should think outside the box if the borough is to remain a tourist magnet.
“UFOs are not something I’ve thought about but we are always looking at innovative schemes,” said the cabinet member. “We won’t discount anything.”
However, the council seemed less receptive to the idea, with a spokesperson adding: “Our tourism strategy concentrates on a number of key themes and target markets.
“But this particular area of interest isn’t one of them.”