Horse Racing

Grand National 2023: Festival expected to net local economy millions

In recent times, the Grand National has come in for some fairly harsh criticism, and perhaps rightly so, what with horse welfare often at the forefront of concerns. Changes and updates to processes continue to be made in a bid to tackle that side of things, which is positive. What’s also positive are the recent findings that the Grand National is a mammoth success for the local economy.

Recent research undertaken by the Liverpool Business School found that in 2022, the Grand National Festival, often referred to as the Aintree Festival, which is run over three consecutive days every April, netted the local economy somewhere in the region of £60,000,000. Unsurprisingly, that has been referred to as a “massive boost” for the financial state of the region, with the hospitality and entertainment sectors benefitting substantially.

Aintree Grand National
Photo by Icon Sport

Last year’s Grand National meeting was the first time that crowds had flocked to the Merseyside racecourse since COVID-19 put a halt to proceedings a few years earlier, and it was a welcome return to a busier-than-normal time for a whole host of business, including hotels, bars, restaurants, shops, salons and hairdressers, many of which had to extend their opening hours to meet demands.

It’s clear to see that without the yearly festival, many businesses would be badly impacted, as would the local economy in general, so we shouldn’t expect this age-old tradition to end any time soon. The 2023 Grand National Festival is expected to be just as much of a financial successful, with the income generated perhaps even likely to rise above that of last year.

It may have it critics, but it’s clear that the flagship event is key for the local area and with the total economic impact of the festival estimated to be in excess of £60 million, the event is here to stay.

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