Page last updated at 09:37 GMT, Tuesday, 21 April 2009 10:37 UK

Dorset towns plan to accept euro

Euro coin and a pound sign
Traders in Bournemouth and Poole will accept euros this summer

British tourists are being encouraged to holiday on the South Coast this summer by two Dorset towns which will accept unwanted euros.

Businesses across Bournemouth and Poole will accept the European currency in a move to welcome holidaymakers that may shun trips to the continent.

Hotels, restaurants and guest houses are among the traders which plan to take on the scheme.

Tourism chiefs believe the move could be worth about £10m to the region.

The figure is based on the estimate of half a million tourists each spending 20 euros as a part of their holiday budget.

A tourism spokeswoman said that traders would manage their own exchange rate, but are expected to accept only banknotes rather than coins.

Traders accepting the euro
Urban Beach hotel, Bournemouth
Art Deco Cumberland Hotel, Bournemouth
Mount Lodge guesthouse, Bournemouth
Sandbanks Hotel, Poole
Viewpoint guesthouse, Poole
Luminiere bed and breakfast, Poole
Portsmouth Hoy pub, Poole

Mark Cribb, a local hotelier, said: "With so many UK holidaymakers likely to shun eurozone countries this summer, there'll be an awful lot of unwanted euros sitting around in people's pockets and sock drawers.

"If accepting continental currency adds to our unbeatable holiday value, we're all for it."

Poole Tourism's Graham Richardson, said: "It's a small start, but we're confident we can sign up lots more hotels and restaurants - after all, every little helps."

Earlier this year the village of Dunster in Somerset began a similar scheme in an effort to boost tourism.

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