TRADERS had a £10 million boost as 250,000 punters flocked to this year’s Brighton Fringe.
Art lovers splashed their cash at hotels, pubs, restaurants, venues and shops during the four week event with £1.2 million alone spent on 140,000 tickets.
The end of Fringe review, which was released this week, showed the event’s takings were slightly down on 2013’s record breaking run.
However, event managing director, Julian Caddy, said he was “pleased” adding that the Fringe had consolidated in size, depth and breadth.
‘Delicate ecology’ He said: “Brighton Fringe is a delicate ecology of events all across the city, bringing with it a massive boost to the local economy and I believe that, as the festival grows, we are well placed to see further significant increases in years to come. “So it is vital that we continue to nurture and support this, along with all the other festivals in May – and the key is through increased visitor numbers.” This year’s Fringe, which ran between May 3 and June 1, was the second time it has been held for four weeks – rather than the traditional three.
There were 740 individual events, including 214 free ones, with 3,541 performances at 183 venues across the city.
In comparison, 2013 saw 795 individual events, with 167 free.
A major focus for this year was the family programme with a separate Family Guide produced for the first time.
As a result, the number of shows was the highest ever at 247 – double the number in 2013.
Mr Caddy told The Argus it was important the event was attractive to artists wishing to further their careers.
He also called on the council to reallocate funding to help promote the event more widely.
Councillor Geoffrey Bowden, chair of Brighton and Hove’s economic development and culture committee, said: “The impact of the city’s cultural activity is often underestimated.
“While it does’t surprise me to learn that this year’s fabulously diverse Fringe contributed £10m towards the local economy, that is only half the story.
“The Fringe, the Brighton Festival and the more than 300 events that take place in our city make a massive impact on the well-being of those who live here and is often one of the key factors for businesses deciding to locate and invest here too."
Next year’s event will run from May 1 to 31. Visit www.brighton fringe.org.