Perth Racecourse benefits the Scottish economy to the tune of £11.8m annually – with £9.9m of that impacting locally – and provides the equivalent of 130 full-time jobs, a new report reveals today.
The economic impact report, commissioned by the racecourse and produced by 4-Consulting, uses Scottish Government measurement models and shines a light on the huge benefits the UK’s northernmost track brings to the local and national economy. There are two main drivers of economic activity; the racecourse itself – primarily through spectator spend, hospitality, entry fees, retailer income, media rights, the betting levy and sponsorship – and off-course expenditure by racegoers in the local area on race days, such as in hotels, bars and restaurants.
More than 50,000 spectators attended Perth’s 15 race days in 2017, equating to a daily average crowd of 3,340. Of Perth’s total spectators, the report found that 75% arrive at the Scone venue from outside Perth and Kinross – 70% from elsewhere in Scotland and 5% from further afield, mainly England. However more than 80% of the £11.8m total revenues generated the previous year remained in the local economy, underlining Perth’s position as a significant visitor attraction and contributor to the economic prosperity of the region.
Other key findings of the report were that Perth makes a £3.4m contribution to government revenues (taxes and NI) with more than half of those collected in Scotland and directly assigned to Scottish Government or the local authority.
The report follows the recent announcement that Perth’s total prize-money for 2018 will be a record £1.25m, helped by an 18% rise in its own executive contribution and representing a 35% year-on-year increase overall.
Hazel Peplinksi, Chief Executive at Perth Racecourse, said: “The team at Perth regards itself as very fortunate to be an ‘exporter of fun’, bringing quality sporting enjoyment to those who share our passion for horse racing. However, what this comprehensive and independent report has uncovered is the current economic value of Perth Racecourse. Due to the scale, which may surprise many, one cannot deny that Perth Racecourse has become a major exporter to the rest of Scotland and beyond.
“Within those huge figures of £11.8m overall economic impact and 130 full-time equivalent jobs, what is really pleasing to see is how much of that is spent locally and benefits other local businesses, with £9.9m of revenues and the equivalent of 110 full-time jobs being delivered in Perth & Kinross alone.
“We are extremely proud of this strong economic impact which is testament to the support we enjoy from so many – from our loyal racegoers and corporate clients to the faithful Owners and Trainers who travel great distances to provide the brave participants of our sport. Vast swathes of racegoers continue to embark on regular pilgrimages to Perth, feasting their senses on the stunning Perthshire landscapes during the prettiest months of the Scottish calendar.
“With our recent announcement of a quantum leap in prize-money for 2018 (35% increase), we are full of excitement about the season ahead and look forward to working with all our partners to ensure Perth racecourse continues to contribute to the economy at such a significant level.”
Perth Racecourse’s economic value was further boosted by the 2016 opening of its bespoke hotel, The Lodge, which welcomes visitors throughout the year attending weddings, exhibitions and conferences on-site, as well as catering for travelling stable staff on race days. Along with Owners’ entry fees, on-course retail revenues, media rights, the Horserace Betting Levy and sponsorship income streams, this diversification into accommodation provision contributed to the racecourse’s generation of £6.4m (£5.7m locally) of economic impact in 2016.
Away from the track, the economic impact of Perth’s off-course expenditure totalled £3.7m (£2.5m locally) in 2016, while development revenues, such as the breeding, training and ownership of racehorses, and media activities added £1.7m, resulting in the overall economic impact figure of £11.8m.
Perth will again host 15 National Hunt race days in 2018, starting with the three-day Perth Festival in April, which will feature DJ Nick Grimshaw of BBC Radio 1 playing after racing on the Friday (April 27).
To purchase tickets and for more information on the season ahead, visit www.perth-races.co.uk.