April 25 2019 @ 11:00 by Richard Dawson
Newcastle United has joined forces with the region’s largest independent business organisation to help maximise the benefit of sport and leisure to bring investment and economic growth to the region.
The club has become a partner member of North East England Chamber of Commerce to support the development of its Stronger North East campaign and strengthen ties with the region’s business community.
Working together, the Chamber and Newcastle United will showcase the value of major sporting events and activity in the North East and make the case for more showpiece occasions to take place in our region.
A spokesperson for Newcastle United said: “The club is keen to develop partnerships working across the North East to build on the successes we have had in recent years with events such as the Rugby World Cup and the Ed Sheeran concerts.
“A recent report published by EY showed the massive social and economic impact of the club and the Newcastle United Foundation. St James’ Park is a huge asset and we look forward to working more closely with the Chamber and others to deliver even more benefits to the city and wider region.”
Jonathan Walker, Chamber assistant director of policy said: “We are delighted to be working closely with Newcastle United FC as a partner member to build on its research into the financial benefits of having a club of its stature in the region.
“Sport plays a huge role in our region’s life from the major football clubs, the length and breadth of the North East, to the similar global interest in events like the Great North Run. They offer us tremendous potential to bring tourism, leisure as well as business investment, to support our region’s growth.”
The EY report said that the club’s economic activity contributed a total of £236m in Gross Value Added to the regional economy, through spending in its supply chains, the induced spending of people employed directly by the club and the impact of tourism.
Over 1m fan visits were made during the 2017-18 season, 188,000 by people who live abroad or outside the wider region, and their spending was worth £21m to the local economy.