Foos bring thousands of pounds to Milton Keynes

Foo Fighters, Milton Keynes Bowl, July 2, 2011. Photo by David Jackson.
Foo Fighters, Milton Keynes Bowl, July 2, 2011. Photo by David Jackson.
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TIMES may be hard across the country but the economy in Milton Keynes has enjoyed a very prosperous July.

A number of major events held last month have helped boost the Milton Keynes economy.

From the Foo Fighters’ concerts at The National Bowl and the JLS concert at stadium:mk, to the Super Bike World Championships and the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, Milton Keynes welcomed an exceptional number of visitors during the month.

There was also another first time event held at stadium:mk – the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Conference which saw over 24,000 people attend over three days at the end of July.

In addition, April saw the Northampton Saints staging their Heineken Cup quarter final against Ulster and their semi-final against French side Perpignan, both at stadium:mk, bringing in thousands of overseas fans to the city.

Destination Milton Keynes (DMK), the official tourism and information provider for the city, has been working with some of the providers to try to establish the economic impact on local business.

A recent study by Northampton Saints showed around 3,500 Ulster fans travelled to Milton Keynes and it is estimated that the average expenditure was £250 per person, with the majority going on food and drink (38 per cent) followed by hotels and accommodation (23 per cent).

The overall estimated income from this match alone was just under £1m excluding any spend from the 18,000 Saints supporters on food and drink.

The Association of Milton Keynes Hoteliers also carried out research with its 22 members to estimate the spend on accommodation over the Foo Fighters concert weekend.

It conservatively estimates that the income from this was around £640,000 but this doesn’t include any food, drink, transport and additional entertainment that the fans would have spent extra on.

The DMK website also received more than 100,000 pages views in the build up to the sold out Foo Fighters concerts as people searched for hotels and travel information to help them to and from the National Bowl.

Jackie Inskipp, general manager at DMK, said; “These types of large events help to establish Milton Keynes in the international leisure market, and will ultimately enhance MK’s reputation as a destination to invest in.

“It shows what a real difference major events can make to Milton Keynes.

“They provide a much needed revenue stream for our accommodation providers, but more than that, they also give us an opportunity to promote the city to a wider, national and international audience.”