Consumers choose to spend their cash on cultural attractions when the going gets tough according to West Midlands Cultural Observatory

They said it would happen and according to research published this week by the West Midlands Cultural Observatory it is happening: the recession has caused consumers to be more selective about what cultural products and services they spend their cash on.

Evidence cited in the latest recession paper suggests that over the Spring and Summer months, people have been saving money on accommodation, but continuing to spend on visits to cultural attractions such as museums, historic houses and visitor attractions when visiting in the region.

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Significant increase in participation in arts activities by West Midlands’ residents

August 2008 saw the much anticipated release of the Taking Part Survey 2006/07 results.

The annual survey, produced by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, collects data about engagement and non-engagement in culture, leisure and sport by adults aged 16 and over. The latest results show a number of positive trends for the West Midlands.

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Quality of life in Bromsgrove

Bromsgrove District Council carried out its second Quality of Life Survey (pdf, 292kb) earlier this year to assess how its residents feel about life in the district.

The survey was sent to a random sample of 1500 households and returned a 47% response rate.

The survey sought to understand residents’ views on a range of topics including climate change, recycling, housing, health and community safety. Continue reading

Birmingham boasts tourism boost

Marketing Birmingham released their Annual Visitor Survey 2007 earlier this week.

The research, carried out in August and September last year, indicate that a record 31.9 million people visited the city for leisure in 2007. A resulting £4.4 billion was spent in the city as a result.

The number of visitors was a 1.5 million increase on the previous year, with increases in spending seen in most sectors. Wining and dining proved particularly popular with a reported £55 million increase in spending compared with 2006, but the survey found that it was the retail sector that outperformed others with a £242m increase.

When asked their favourite aspect of the city, it was the city’s canals that proved to be the most popular with just over 20% of respondents saying that the waterways were Birmingham’s best selling point.

The full report includes visitor profiles, data on accommodation, eating out, shopping, leisure and transport. Further data on tourism in the city and the region is available on Marketing Birmingham’s research pages.