Let’s all work in music

By | Category: Travel rumblings

Last month, some members of the House of Lords urged the government to develop a strategy for music tourism. Here is another subject that I hadn’t spent a lot of time thinking about. Yes, I was aware of festivals like Glastonbury, the Proms, Celtic Connections, Brecon Jazz Festival and some others and I know they lured people of all ages and backgrounds but I had never thought of them being as significant as claimed.

A LibDem peer, Lord Storey, said that music tourists spent £1.4 billion in 2011 and supported 20,000 jobs. That means for every job, £70,000 is brought into the economy. That’s a substantial sum. Were we all to deliver that sort of sum, the economy would pick up even faster! The fact that major festivals aren’t cheap to go to and that this does not deter people from going seems to suggest that we don’t need to give government support to them, just create new niche ones so that we can generate even more money.

UK Music which represents the collective interests of the UK’s commercial music industry is working on research to find out just how important music tourism is. The future findings will probably suggest that destinations like Visit Britain, at one end and individual towns like Brecon at the other, promote music tourism as part of their remit but at least it might be based on some more solid knowledge than we now know.

But what’s to stop this happening at the moment? There are promotions for many regional festivals. It should be easy for the web designers of destinations to come up with a music tourism page which can consider not just events but music links to places much as the Beatles Story in Liverpool does. Why wait. Do it before others jump on the bandwagon.

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