25th April 2014.
With the referendum on Scottish independence just around the corner it is probably timely to review an economic impact study carried out as recently as last year which demonstrates well the benefit to the Scottish economy of themed tourism.
This particular study, commissioned by the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs (FBHVC) and executed by the business school at Brighton University, made a detailed evaluation of an international rally of Austin Healey enthusiasts. It is the most recent in a series of studies looking at the economic benefits of historic vehicle events and the data gathered in these studies is used by the FBHVC in its lobbying activities which are focused on preserving the right of its members to use their historic vehicles on the public highway.
The economic impact study of the 4th European Healey Meeting at Crieff in May and June 2013, in the words of Lord Steel in the forward to the report, broke new ground for the FBHVC. Previous studies had been broad based, assessing either the generality of historic vehicle activity in the UK or the specific local benefits of major events that attract large numbers of the general public. This study was narrow in its focus, concentrated on one marque of car, Austin Healey, and with insignificant public participation. It also for the first time explored the more northerly extremities of the country.
Accounted for spending in the UK of £950,000 Brought over £700,000 into UK from abroad
Created trade worth over £275,000 (net) to the small Scottish community of Crieff
Encouraged tourism and other trade elsewhere in Scotland worth over £160,000 (net)
Encouraged tourism and other trade in England and Wales worth some £360,000 (net)
Contributed £150,000 in VAT
Generated over 7,600 person nights of accommodation in hotels and guest houses
The study was unveiled at a presentation on the Austin Healey stand at the Classic Motor Show at Birmingham's National Exhibition Centre in November 2013. Copies of this and all the FBHVC's previous economic impact reports can be found at http://www.fbhvc.co.uk/research/