Friday, 29 February 2008

What a boost from Capital of Culture - and it's only February.

Look at this story from Todays Liverpool Echo. Capital of Culture is really making a difference!

Culture crowd on course to beat 10m
Feb 29 2008 by Catherine Jones, Liverpool Echo

*MORE than one million people have taken part in cultural events in Liverpool since the start of 2008.

The figure was revealed today as the city was celebrating after another big night for Capital of Culture.

Culture officials say they believe numbers will easily break the 10 million barrier by the end of the year.

Cultural director Phil Redmond said today: “It’s very exciting and I think it will only gather pace.

“The programme itself gets stronger as the year goes on.

“I think 10 million would be a pretty conservative final figure. It looks like we’re on line for more than that.”

Thousands of people took part in a string of events last night.

There was a sell-out audience at the Metropolitan Cathedral for the world premiere of Sir John Tavener’s Requiem, while audiences also packed the Everyman Theatre to see Poet Laureate Andrew Motion and the Professor Richard Dawkins lecture at the Philharmonic Hall.

ECHO editor Alastair Machray saw poet Andrew Motion.

He said: “It was like a masterclass for aspiring poets and there was a hugely enthusiastic audience.

“He said he was touched so many people had turned out given the ‘Biblical temptations’ down the road.”

The red carpet was also out for Jennifer Ellison back in town for a Liverpool premiere of her new film The Cottage, and veteran comedy act The Grumbleweeds entertained at an event to celebrate the best of the city’s pub and club life.

Last night’s events added to the 1,067,000 who have already got involved in Capital of Culture year. The figures include:

325,000 people who have visited National Museums Liverpool sites including 37,000 at the Walker art gallery to see Ben Johnson’s Cityscape.

118,000 at the Empire theatre.

70,000 at the ECHO Arena and BT Convention Centre.

48,500 at the Philharmonic.

40,000 taking part in the People’s Opening in Lime Street.

25,960 through doors of the Everyman and Playhouse.

Deborah Aydon, the theatres’ executive director, said audience numbers were up 63% on the same period last year.

She said: “The beginning of Capital of Culture year has been an absolute dream.

“We had 7,500 people who saw Three Sisters on Hope Street at the Everyman, and of those, 3,000 were first-time bookers.”

There was also success last night for Liverpool band the Wombats who won an accolade at the NME Awards last night.

Today the ECHO exclusively reveals Diana Ross is heading for the Summer Pops, while tonight Westlife will play to thousands of fans at the ECHO Arena.


PM Swimmer said...

hmmm, surely the straight numbers don't matter one jot, its the numbers above those achieved in previous years minus any natural growth that would be expected based on the trend over previous years, that we all need to know.

Dear dear paula a rather typical politicians attitude to statistics your demonstrating there.

Theres also the huge question of how many of those are visitors external to the region or country, the ones likely to spend a decent amount plus one really should be careful about checking the numbers come form a reliable source.

Now call me cynical but TMP and the council themselves have both a vested interest and a rather poor recent record when it comes to numbers.

Paula said...

You are right that year on year same time period comparisons are best. The best two examples from non Culture Company/TMP sources are the increase in bookings at the theatre/first time bookers figure which is in the story pasted on (see towards the bottom - named source - hardly unreliable) and comes from the theatre itself. And the story in February about year on year increases Jan 07/Jan 08 at National Museums Liverpool venues. Admittedly this is not in this Echo story because of front page coverage a couple of weeks ago.

And while I agree that it is important to encourage more visitors to come to the cultural venues here for all sorts of reasons - jobs, increaased tourism spend etc - which is what is happening big time, it is also important to encourage "natives" who have perhaps never visited some of our cultural treasures and who are now doing so because of the C of C effort. So even if some of these figures do include Liverpool folk - I say great news. C of C is for all of us.

A good story I would have thought - lets celebrate success!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I have 'rellies' on both sides of the water and they tell me that there are alot if banners covering alot of the more ram shackled and unsightly buildings. Also the amount of money spent on Liverpool it should bloody look good. Signed Tranmere fan now living in Somerset.