£90m boost – Birmingham's late Christmas present

By on 02/03/2010 in News

An independent report estimates Birmingham's Frankfurt Christmas Market 2009 boosted the city's economy by a staggering £89.6million over the festive period.

With visitor numbers up to a record breaking three million, figures released by Vector Research show the UK's biggest German market once again helped the city's traders defy the recession.

In its ninth year, the Frankfurt Christmas Market is now a major highlight in the city's calendar and the economic impact has steadily increased - it was worth an estimated £67 million in 2008

Cllr Mike Whitby, Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “Once again the Frankfurt Christmas Market was a huge success and the continued popularity of this event provides a massive annual boost for the city's economy.

“The three million visitors to the market also spend money in our shops, restaurants and hotels, adding to the overall economy of the city centre at a critical time of year for retailers and business.

“In addition, the market considerably raises the profile of the city, attracting positive media coverage to the tune of £670,000.”

The Frankfurt Christmas Market and accompanying home-grown craft fair attracts shoppers to Birmingham from across the UK and 95 per cent of 2009 visitors rated the experience as excellent or good.

Cllr Martin Mullaney, Cabinet Member for Leisure, Sport & Culture, added: “The Frankfurt Christmas Market delivers year after year, shining a worldwide media spotlight on Birmingham.

“Once again in 2009 we had visitors from across the UK and even further afield. It's not just the figures that are impressive though, the market research consistently shows high levels of visitor satisfaction and that's why Birmingham's Frankfurt Christmas Market continues to grow from strength to strength.”


Notes to editors

The number of visitors increased to an estimated 3m an increase of 7.14%. An independent survey and evaluation demonstrates an overall approval rating for the markets of excellent/good at 95%. This clearly shows that the high rating achieved by the market in previous years is being maintained.

The age range of visitors to the BFCM has a youthful profile with 26.7% 18 – 24 and 23.2% 25-34. The age range for the BCF is slightly older 19.9% 45-59 and 17.1% 60 - 64.
The number of males attending the markets at 54.6% is slighting higher than females. The ethnic profile is 78% White, 10.4% Asian, 6.4% Black.

Visitors questioned during the survey commented on the great atmosphere created by the market and the safe and well organised environment.

The economic value of the markets rose this year to 89.6m a rise of 31% and the market continues to act as a magnet for visitors as its reputation has grown.

The market faces increased competition from other cities such as Manchester - markets, ice rink, wheel, Santa's Grotto and giant snow-dome/slide, Leeds, – markets, ice rink and Tropical World. Liverpool - ice rink, Go Penguins Extravaganza, wheel; all are making significant investment in both markets and other attractions/events at Christmas.

Locally, Solihull introduced a small German Market in Mell Square as there is evidence that their footfall numbers were/are affected by the draw of Birmingham's Christmas offer. This had no impact on the BFCM.

Birmingham's market is the largest authentic German market held anywhere in the world outside Germany and Austria.

The following stats appeared in the Frankfurter Neue Presse following the 2008 markets. The table lists the most visited Christmas Markets in Germany.
1st - Cologne 4 million
2nd - Dortmund 3.5 million
Joint 3rd - Frankfurt and Stuttgart with 3 million each
4th - Munich 2.9 million
BIRMINGHAM 2.8 million
5th - Dresden 2.5 million
6th - Nuremberg 2.2 million
7th - Erfurt 2 million
Joint 8th - Berlin-Spandau and Hamburg with 1.8 million each
Joint 9th - Aachen and Lübeck with 1.5 million each
10th - Braunschweig 0.85 million

For more information call Geoff Coleman on 0121 303 3501

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There Are 2 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Jon Bounds says:

    It’d be nice to see the actual survey results — or at least the full report. It would be useful to other people planning city centre events or activities.

    The methodologies of the economic impact figures would be particularly interesting.

  2. Kavan Hawker says:

    I’ve just come across this article and I have to say a fantastic job has been done to provide security, a safe, warm and friendly atmosphere and I look forward to continual expansion and improvement of this market. Job well done!