Westport House Estate Revealed As The Motivation For Over 60% of Tourists To Travel to Mayo According to Westport House Economic Impact Study by CHL Consulting Co. Ltd for Mayo County Council
Westport House in numbers:
- 162,000 visitors in 2014 (up 82% on 2009)
- €1.7 million Direct Expenditure to the Exchequer and the local economy in 2014
- €50.7 million Indirect Investment to Mayo and the wider region
- 47 full time jobs on site at Westport House Estate
- 84% visitors are Irish
- €1.8 million in turnover generated in the financial year ending 30.09.2014
- Over 60% of respondents to an on-site survey reported that Westport House was their principle motivation for travelling to Mayo
A major new report carried out by CHL Consulting Co. Ltd on behalf of Mayo County Council in September 2015 revealed the total economic impact of Westport House Estate to the economy of the region. The report was launched on September 29th at Westport House Estate. Privately owned by the Browne Family for almost 400 years and open to the public since 1960, the Estate directly creates 47 jobs and accounts for €50.7 million indirect expenditure for the region. Westport House Estate has also shown significant growth in recent years with over 162,000 paying customers in 2014 – up 82% on the 89,000 visitors in 2009.)
Westport House Estate is cited as one of Ireland’s national treasures. Since 1960 the Browne Family have invested significantly in the estate in order to ensure that it continues trading as a leading tourism attraction – mainly by providing a changing and evolving range of tourism activities. This has resulted in the Estate’s rise as one of the Top 20 paying attractions in the country.
In terms of a direct contribution of economic value created, Westport House contributed almost €1.64 million to the Exchequer and the local/regional economy in the twelve months ending 30 September 2014.
In terms of economic value generated by Westport House, some €50.7 million (based on an on-site survey) will be spent in Mayo and the wider region by consumers visiting the House this year (this figure is separate to the expenditure these visitors make at Westport House itself). This estimate is based upon survey respondents’ reported expenditure, and is limited to those respondents who stated that the House was the principal purpose for their visit to Mayo.
Economic activity on-site at Westport House directly employs 47.1 people (Full Time Equivalents). It is estimated, based upon Fáilte Ireland multipliers, that the expenditures associated with those that cite Westport House as the principal reason for their visit to Mayo, support a further 1,724 jobs elsewhere in the regional economy.
Based on Fáilte Ireland estimates of tax receipts accruing to the Exchequer through tourism activity, the €50.7 million referenced above (arising from tourism associated with Westport House) will yield an additional €12.4 million for the Exchequer.
Westport House is predominantly a domestic market family tourism product. Survey results indicate that some 84.4% of visitors to the House were Irish.
In an on-site survey, 60.9% of respondents reported that Westport House was their principal motivation for travelling to Mayo.
The product offering at Westport House aligns well with the wider national tourism policy agenda, and it serves as a prominent and significant adventure hub along the Wild Atlantic Way. As such, Westport House can expect to benefit from the continued domestic and international marketing of the Wild Atlantic Way.
Apart from its performance as an economic asset, Westport House is a cultural and heritage asset of national significance, and consequently the non-monetised value of the House and estate needs to be recognised in assessing the significance of the House to the life and economy of Mayo.
The report was carried out by CHL Consulting Co. Ltd using a full review of financial documents at Westport House Estate. An on – site survey of 400 respondents took place in July 2015. Consultations were also carried out with all local bodies and the community at large.
History of Westport House
The 1st Earl of Altamont, John Browne, built Westport House in 1730 although it is believed that there has been a “big house” on the site since the 1500’s. The Browne Family continue to own and manage the property, and this adds a distinctive feature to Westport House, which is not only a historic property of note, but also the home of the Browne family for over 300 years. As a result of this, the house and its contents in terms of portraits, antiques, furniture, papers and archives all tell the story of Mayo and Ireland for these three centuries. The house opened to the public in 1960, and since that time a range of attractions and activities has been developed on the estate with a view to establishing Westport House as a tourism attraction with a particular focus on the family market. Over the 55 years since if opened to the public, the house and the tourism facilities developed on-site have been privately funded by the Browne Family.
Download Full Report
A full copy of the report can be downloaded here here.