…By Henry George for TDPel Media.
A new study reveals that Wimbledon fortnight contributes a staggering £200 million to the London economy, solidifying its position as the most valuable annual sporting event in Britain.
The influx of thousands of spectators, players, officials, event staff, and media representatives at the All England Lawn Tennis Club translates into millions of pounds injected into the local economy each day, through spending on accommodation, food and drink, transport, and merchandise over the two-week championship.
Last Year’s Economic Impact and Projections for the Future
Researchers from Sheffield Hallam University’s sports industry research center found that in 2022, Wimbledon had a total economic impact of £198.9 million in London and supported economic activity worth £222.4 million across the capital.
Nationally, these figures were £319.1 million and £367.9 million, respectively.
However, if the All England Club’s Wimbledon Park development plans, which would allow for increased admissions up to 650,000, receive planning permission, the projected economic boost for London could rise to £268 million, with economic activity reaching £296.3 million by 2031.
Spectator Spending and Participant Contributions
According to the commissioned report, last year’s tournament saw 515,164 spectators attending Wimbledon, spending an average of £79 per day (excluding tickets, programs, and overnight accommodation).
In addition, there were 2,155 accredited players and support teams (with an average daily spend of £224.65), 385 court officials (£91.21), 2,900 media personnel (£205.83), and 8,200 event staff.
The report also includes the £78.3 million spending by the All England Club from the financial surplus generated by the championships.
Local Impact and Business Growth
The study highlights the significant positive impact on the local economy, with £74 million of new money being brought into Merton and Wandsworth alone.
Local restaurants, cafes, and shops experienced notable increases in revenue, ranging from 20% to 200% in Merton and 10% to 100% in Wandsworth, compared to a typical week’s takings.
Business owners expressed their delight with the event’s return, acknowledging Wimbledon as a significant highlight that helps recover losses from the pandemic.
Acknowledgment and Future Benefits
Richard Burge from the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry emphasized the pivotal role of Wimbledon in London’s economy and praised the forthcoming impact report for reaffirming its significance.
Sally Bolton, Chief Executive of the All England Club, highlighted the Wimbledon Park project’s aim to maintain the championship’s prominence by bringing Qualifying to SW19 and providing year-round benefits for Londoners.
The study underscores the immense economic impact of Wimbledon on the London economy, positioning it as the most valuable annual sporting event in Britain.
With millions of pounds being injected daily, the championship serves as a significant driver of economic activity, benefiting various sectors such as hospitality, retail, and transportation.
The report’s findings, along with the projected future growth with the Wimbledon Park development plans, further highlight the championship’s vital role in the local and national economy.
As Wimbledon returns, it not only showcases world-class tennis but also provides a significant boost to London’s economic landscape.