UK music tourism generated £3.1 billion last year

UK Music has published new figures on the contribution music tourism makes to the UK economy in the latest edition of its ‘Wish You Were Here’ report.

And in case you were sitting there just wondering to yourself what the top line stats might be, we can confirm that music tourism numbers increased by 34% between 2011 and 2014, with 9.5 million eager human beings travelling to UK music events in 2014 alone. Over half a million came from overseas, the rest travelling more than “three times the average commuting distance” of an event’s local region in order to get to said event.
Other stats presented in the UK Music report are that £3.1 billion was generated by music tourism last year, while those 546,000 music tourists coming from abroad spent an average of £751 while in the UK. The music industry group also reckons that 38,238 full time jobs were sustained by music tourism last year.

Welcoming the new report, the government’s recently appointed Culture Secretary Johnny Whittingdale told reporters: “It’s fantastic news that our music industry drew in 9.5 million tourists last year but it’s no surprise. British music is legendary around the world and continues to go from strength to strength, with UK artists now accounting for one in seven albums sold worldwide”.

He went on: “Festivals like Glastonbury hold an iconic status on the world music scene and are one of the reasons why international tourism is booming in the UK, drawing in streams of visitors to all parts of the country. We know our UK creative industries contribute an astonishing £76.9 billion to the UK economy but this report confirms they are truly world-class and a powerful advert for the UK”.

Speaking for UK Music itself, the industry-wide trade group’s CEO Jo Dipple said: “The UK’s rich music heritage and infrastructure has made the UK the go-to destination for live music globally and these statistics show how tourism is now a bedrock of British music and the wider economy”.

Read the report here.

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Damion Pell
About the Author

Loves long walks along the beach, holding hands and romantic 80's power ballads, partial to electronic music and likes to make the odd mix or two.