Stars back VisitBritain campaign for tourism

Dame Judi Dench, Jamie Oliver, and Slumdog Millionaire star Dev Patel have all thrown their weight behind a VisitBritain campaign promoting British tourism.

The globally-recognisable celebs are capitalising on the recent success of the Royal Wedding in April and tourism chiefs are ramping up efforts to see other national events do just as well.

This includes the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the London 2012 Olympics which will see hundreds of event spaces in the capital turned into impromptu party zones and meeting places.

In a YouTube commercial, each celebrity will make a personal invitation welcoming those around the world to join in with the festivities next year with the slogan, “You’re Invited”, reports.

While Dame Judi Dench will promote Britain’s national architecture, TV chef-turned-food-campaigner Jamie Oliver will celebrate the country’s rich diversity in what he describes as the world’s “best bits”.

Similarly, acting-sensation Dev Patel will reach out to international Asian communities when he talks about the vibrant atmosphere in his home city.

VisitBritain chief executive Sandie Dawe said that the campaign, also due to be screened globally on BBC World News, is “the start of an ambitious marketing programme,” according to

”With the eyes of the world on us, we have an unprecedented opportunity to showcase Britain and then to close the sale with great travel deals and offers from our partners,” she continued.

”This campaign aims to inspire visitors to come and explore for themselves. Over four years, we aim to attract four million extra overseas visitors, who will spend £2 billion across Britain.”