Figures from Tour of Britain race organisers reveal that visitors spent £2,975,000 in our area when North Lincolnshire hosted a stage of the race in September last year.
The figure, revealed in a report to North Lincolnshire Council’s Cabinet, was welcomed by its Leader Cllr Rob Waltham as the “tip of the iceberg” in terms of the benefits from the special day.
Big names from across the world of cycling – including Mark Cavendish and Gerraint Thomas – brought an estimated 200,000 spectators to North Lincolnshire on the day, with almost half (47 per cent) coming from outside the area.
Eleven per cent of visitors stayed overnight, putting £530,000 into the area’s accommodation businesses.
An estimated 25,000 people saw the stage’s climactic end on the Kingsway by Central Park in Scunthorpe, over 50 per cent more than were predicted. Between 10,000 and 15,000 saw the riders set off from Normanby Hall Country Park.
Pubs, restaurants, cafés and bars also benefitted from a race-day boost. £960,000 was spent by spectators on food and drink and some local pubs reported takings up 70 per cent on the day and equivalent to Christmas takings.
On TV, 523,000 viewers watched the race live from North Lincolnshire on ITV4, with a further 383,000 watching highlights of the stage and repeats.
Much of the costs of hosting the race came from sponsorship deals with businesses. Others, such as road closures and bringing forward certain scheduled road repairs along the route, were met by the council.
Cllr Waltham said: “The £3m pumped into our local economy on race day is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the benefits of hosting the Tour of Britain last year.
“Hours of live TV coverage, both in the UK and abroad, beamed images of Normanby Hall, our beautiful towns and villages, and a packed Central Park to hundreds of thousands of people; you can’t put a price on that kind of fantastic publicity.
“What we also can’t measure is the feel-good factor that hosting the Tour gave to the people of North Lincolnshire. The race brought communities together, instilling in residents a sense of pride.
“With 65 per cent of spectators feeling inspired to cycle more often, we can also grow North Lincolnshire’s cycling culture and encourage residents to stay healthy, fit and active through cycling.
“We’ve shown that North Lincolnshire can host major national events and we can look forward to building on the success of the Tour to host more major events in the future.”