Ryde is a seaside town on the north coast of the Isle of Wight. The Isle of Wight is heavily reliant on its tourist trade and Ryde is of considerable importance for this industry. It is significant because:-
- it is the main ‘gateway’ to the island from the south east of England
- it has one of the Isle of Wight’s best beaches
- it also has many historic buildings and a distinctive skyline
A regular Hovercraft service and a ferry service connects the town to Portsmouth and a railway runs from Ryde to Sandown and Shanklin, two resorts on the south east part of the Island. The pier, necessary on the wide beach for a regular passenger service, is the fourth longest in the UK.
Almost a fifth of the Isle of Wight’s population live in and around the parish of Ryde. A significant number of the workforce (around 20%) is employed in the seasonal tourist sector.
The Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce and Ryde Town Council have agreed a ‘vision’ for the town as part of a masterplanning process with the aim to sustain and improve the town for visitors, residents and employers.