Aviation & Aerospace

Bournemouth Chamber hails air festival a big win for town’s visitor economy with 600,000 attendees

Bill Perkins, President of Bournemouth Chamber.

By Daniel Face [email protected]

Published: October 4, 2023 | Updated: 3rd October 2023

Bournemouth Air Festival has once again proven a hit with visitors after 600,000 people showed up to enjoy the four-day event.

Bournemouth Air Festival 2023 logoAs the UK’s biggest seafront air show, it’s grown over the past 15 years to become a staple fixture of the aviation calendar.

And as a last hurrah for the summer season, it’s always a welcome boost for the town’s hospitality industry.

Bill Perkins, President of Bournemouth Chamber, noted that visitor spending increased by more than £50 million thanks to the festival, with nearby Christchurch and Poole also seeing benefits.

“Although it rained on the first day, we were blessed with good weather for the rest of the weekend”, said Bill.

Bill Perkins“Hotels were almost all completely booked, and you can’t underestimate the importance of this for a sector that was hit so hard by the lockdowns.

“The festival effectively extends the tourist season for another week. This makes a huge difference.

“The entire seafront was packed with stalls doing business, and all this helps create a major boost for the local economy.

“The hospitality sector is what the town was built upon and is why it needs policy to help it wherever it can.

“Thousands are employed in it, many of them young people, and without the air festival these jobs and shifts wouldn’t exist.”

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