The move into a New Year is always a time of excitement and anticipation for us all but what does the New Year mean for businesses in Bridlington?
While the celebrations of the festive period seem a long time ago, businesses need to be gearing up for the next twelve months.
Business, as we all know, is cyclic and there will be boom times and lean times ahead.
For many of our businesses this is a regular pattern, with reliance upon the tourist trade throughout the season to ensure viability.
For other businesses not reliant upon tourism, the benefits of Bridlington as a residential town and with the potential as a year-round destination take on extra significance.
Unlike towns situated inland, Bridlington’s catchment area for trade is smaller.
Inland, the towns have the advantage of 360° catchment areas. Bridlington’s location on the coast reduces the catchment area to 180°, so anything that can be done to increase numbers coming into Bridlington is a welcome bonus.
It has been well documented that events such as the International Pool Championships and the British Darts Open bring much appreciated trade and revenue into the town for many local businesses but these are just two examples of events that promote the town, boost visitor numbers and importantly encourage more overnight visitors to Bridlington.
There is plenty going on throughout the year, both in Bridlington and the surrounding area, with East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s events team and Visit Hull and East Yorkshire (VHEY) organising and promoting various events to encourage people to come the area.
We are very fortunate in Bridlington to have such a wonderful facility as Bridlington Spa with everything it has to offer all year-round, including, amongst other events, five to eight concerts by top names, annually.
The venue has successfully forged a reputation as the perfect place for an arena tour warm-up gig.
With its capacity of 3,800, such gigs bring thousands of people to the town out-of-season – many of whom look to local accommodation providers, restaurants and shops to complement their evening out.
Bridlington Spa’s pantomime, Aladdin, saw an audience drawn from far and wide with people travelling from places like London, Kent, Wrexham, Cheshire and Birmingham to enjoy the show.
Andrew Aldis, general manager of Bridlington Spa explained to me that they had a huge responsibility to maintain a healthy, varied and attractive programme because every person attracted to Bridlington Spa is a person that will spend money in the local tourism economy.
Continuing to create or support new and regular events is key to the continued success of the town as a whole.
Combine all the events at the spa with other events organised at Sewerby Hall, the Sailing Cobble Festival on the Harbour, Sewerby Cricket Club Gala and many independent events taking place and the potential for increased trade for local businesses is greater than is probably realised.
It’s something for us all to think about and to take the opportunity to attend some of these events in 2018 and help support local businesses.