Leisure Industry Overview - UK - December 2009
This report provides an overview of the UK leisure industry, in terms of overall spending trends and the performance of individual sectors, as well as providing an insight into the UK leisure consumer, in terms of behaviour, response to the recession and attitudes and opinions.
- The recession and higher prices caused by rocketing overheads have both contributed to a second successive year of declining leisure spending. In 2009, the leisure industry will be worth approaching £70 billion, a 9% increase over 2004 but 1.5% lower than in 2008.
- The best-performing area of the industry during the past five years has been cultural leisure such as music concerts and festivals (+64.3%), theatre (+27.7%) and museums (+15.6%).
- Music concerts and festivals (+8.3%) has shown the strongest growth in the past year while, benefiting from strong inbound tourism, theatre (+4.2%) also performed well, as did museums and galleries (+4%).
- Eating out and drinking in pubs and bars – which together account for 70% of total leisure spend - have been experiencing contrasting fortunes during the past five years. Eating out (+16.6% by value) has seen growth (albeit with a greater focus on value since the recession began) whereas pub/ bar drinking (-2.8%) is on the wane as the sector reels from the ‘double-whammy’ of the smoking ban and competition from cut-price supermarket alcohol.
- Drinking in pubs/bars and eating out (43% and 40% of adults respectively) are where people are most likely to have made cutbacks already, along with clubbing, cinema and traditional gaming such as betting and bingo.
- Looking forward, non-Lottery gaming looks set to bear the brunt of future spending reductions, along with visits to theme parks, clubbing and health club memberships.
- The family market has been particularly vulnerable. Consequently, sectors deriving an above-average proportion of custom from this source, such as tenpin bowling (-2.5%), theme parks (-3.6%) and zoos/wildlife parks (-4.5%) have seen some of the biggest declines in the past year.
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