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Monday, 11 November, 2002, 10:02 GMT
Alnwick gets the magic touch
Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle appears in the Harry Potter films
Estate agents in Alnwick say they have been inundated with house-hunters since the town was voted the best place to live in the UK.

Country Life magazine crowned the Northumberland market town as the best when it comes to house prices, crime rate and local amenities.

Since 31 October when the announcement was made, tourism workers have also reported a "tremendous" jump in inquiries.

The Country Life article along with the "Harry Potter effect" has been credited for sparking the huge interest.


There has been a 500% increase on our website... enquires have gone up from an average daily 870 log-ons to 5,364

Maria Mannion, Alnwick District Council

Alnwick Castle is better known to millions of children across the world as Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the Harry Potter films.

Simon Brierly, chartered surveyor with estate agents George F. White, told BBC Radio Newcastle the telephones were very busy.

"After the Country Life article we were inundated for a few days with lots of inquires and we did have our busiest week for a few years.

"There is a great demand for holiday homes in the Alnwick district coastal and rural locations.

More tourism

"I think prices are going to be pushed up further, not only because of the renewed interest, but because Alnwick will have very little development in the next 20 years."

Maria Mannion, head of tourism and regeneration for Alnwick District Council, said requests for accommodation lists and holiday bookings had soared.

"There has been a 500% increase on our website... inquires have gone up from an average daily 870 log-ons to 5,364.

"Our level of inquiries for holiday guides has gone up tremendously. We would expect about four a week at this time of year, but I'm coming into about 20 or 30 a day."

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Maria Mannion, tourist officer for Alnwick
"There is heaps and heaps to do in Alnwick"

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31 Oct 02 | England
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