Audience Finder National Visual Arts Sector Cluster 2014/15

Galleries play a significant role in the visitor economy

New research from the Audience Finder National Visual Arts cluster has shown that galleries play a significant role in the visitor economy, with one in three visitors specifically planning their trip to visit a particular gallery.

The National Visual Arts Benchmark report, produced in partnership with CVAN (Contemporary Visual Arts network),  covers over 25,850 survey responses collected by 59 galleries across England through interviewer-led surveys undertaken from July 1st 2014 – 31st March 2015.
The survey results showed that just over half of visitors to the galleries were from outside the local area, with one in three having planned their trip to visit a specific gallery. A further quarter of visitors included a gallery visit as part of the trip, even if it wasn’t their primary motivation for coming to that local area.

In addition to highlighting the significant role of galleries in driving visitors to their local areas, the report also estimated that the galleries outside London attracted a combined new visitor spend of £25M to their local economy during the period of study.  

Anne Torreggiani, Executive Director of The Audience Agency commented:
“The report demonstrates the strength of the visual arts in terms of its broad reach and the quality of experience it delivers.  Importantly, it also highlights the significant impact that galleries have on attracting visitors and spend to their local areas.”

Julia Bell, the National Coordinator for CVAN said:
“These findings demonstrate the unique value that visual arts bring to audiences and local communities, helping CVAN to make the case for greater partnership working between arts organisations, local authorities, tourism, business and regeneration bodies."

Read the 2014/15 Cluster Benchmark Report here

The Audience Agency
The Audience Agency is a national consultancy with strong regional roots working with cultural organisations to grow audiences in England and Wales. With offices in Manchester and London and a network of Regional Directors across England and Wales, The Audience Agency provides unparalleled service built on in-depth knowledge and understanding of the cultural sector. Generating insight and evidence to inform individual and organisational decision-making and to help to grow a more sustainable cultural economy.

Audience Finder
Audience Finder is a national audience data and development tool, enabling cultural organisations to share, compare and apply insight. It is developed and managed by The Audience Agency for and with the cultural sector, and is funded by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. Organisations have access to user-friendly reporting dashboards, online mapping and insight tools and key metrics and benchmarks at national, regional and sector level.