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Festival of light powerpoint presentation for grow your horizons group 14 oct copy


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Festival of light powerpoint presentation for grow your horizons group 14 oct copy

  1. 1. Festival of Light Mount Stewart Presented by Susan Roberts Visitor Services Manager
  2. 2. • • Short video to be shown
  3. 3. Concept for Festival of Light • Hallowe’en Enchanted Garden has been hosted at Mount Stewart during the past five years as a one-off evening event • Festival of Light was first hosted in 2013 (an event with both light and sound and a much longer duration) • Inspiration and commitment for the event encouraged by success of Pitlochry Enchanted Forest – 12th year and over 30,000 visitors on consecutive night for three weeks • Opportunity to encourage external funding • Enhance the visitor experience • Increase visitor numbers and spend • Integral part of our annual events programme
  4. 4. Challenges • Securing funding • Ticketing • Visitor Experience and expectations • Resources (9 nights) • Operating a high volume outdoor event in the dark - new levels of risk assessment
  5. 5. Successes • 2013 we exceeded our expectations on ticket sales (Target 8K actual 12K) • Excellent visitor experience feedback • Limited marketing and PR budget (£12K) actual coverage in excess of (£45K) • New audiences – first time for people to visit Mount Stewart • Additional revenue streams (shop/restaurant) • Social media as a marketing tool was extremely successful
  6. 6. Vision • Annual event during November • Creation of a visitor offer to encourage an increase to visitor numbers and visitor enjoyment • Ambition to build on this event year on year with a view of making the Ards Peninsula the destination for this time of year • Opportunities for long term sponsorship and partnerships • In future years’ we hope this will be a world class event on local and international calendars
  7. 7. Reviews • “Magical, mystical and quite Magnificent - Festival of Light” • Attended the Festival of Light and found the whole experience quite magical. To see the wonderful grounds lit up with such atmospheric lighting effects together with the accompanying musical arrangements was simply quite magnificent. Even my 12 year old grandson said it was Really Awesome (high praise indeed). As you can progress through the walk at your own pace, it was easy to stop and just absorb the whole atmosphere, at one point at the top of the lake I stayed for nearly 15 mins listening to the music which reminded me of monks chanting and watching the changing colours and shapes of the trees. It was quite emotional and very moving. I can also recommend the Mulled cider on sale, delicious. Hope this is put on every year, will definitely be going again. • Belfast Telegraph “It was one of the most memorable events of the year, if not the decade so far…what a brilliant way to highlight both the beauty of the extensive nature trail and the formal splendour of the estate. It really was a great achievement, brilliantly executed and such a unique experience too.”
  8. 8. Summary • Our target for visitor numbers was 8K (Actual 12K) (5% of whom attended the event more than once) • Media exposure was achieved to the equivalent of £45k (from 12K budget) • Anticipated return on funding investment was 6:1 (this was more than doubled with a return of 14.1 This figure is calculated through the Northern Ireland Tourist Board’s national Economic calculator and is based on revenue to the local economy achieved through visitor spend, bed nights, input to the local economy through employment, plant equipment and staffing expenditure, and visitor numbers achieved from both the local borough, the wider Northern Ireland audience, and international visitors. • We achieved huge support in the local community and from local businesses, many of whom supported the Festival with link-up offers. Local hotels offered Festival of Light weekend packages, local restaurants offered Festival of Light menus and local self catering cottages offered all inclusive packages.
  9. 9. Future • 2014 unfortunately no funding sources • Due to the success of 2013 and the vision for an annual event we are hosting the event again • We intend to build the event year on year