Henslowe Irving study shows theatre worth a million to Westland

Hokitika's Regent Theatre  has a million-dollar-plus impact in the economy

Hokitika’s Regent Theatre has a million-dollar-plus impact in the economy

We’re delighted today to publish our report on Hokitika’s Regent Theatre, the culmination of several month’s work with the theatre’s management committee.

We were commissioned in March 2013 by the management committee to undertake an Indicative Economic Impact Study for the theatre.

We worked with the committee to produce a study that shows the significant economic benefits that the theatre brings to its community and the wider region.

You can view a copy of the report here.

Indicative Economic Impact Study – Hokitika’s Regent Theatre – Henslowe Irving Ltd – vf

The press release issued at the publication of the report follows:

“Theatre worth a million to Westland”

24 June 2013

“Economic impact studies for arts organisations have been a hot topic internationally recently, with UK Culture Secretary Maria Miller suggesting that the arts have an obligation to justify their public funding by showing the economic benefits they bring to their communities.

In what is believed to be the first economic impact study of a theatre in New Zealand, Hokitika’s Regent Theatre has been shown to have a $1+ million impact on the Westland and national economy, and is a significant economic player in the region.

The news comes in an Indicative Economic Impact Study which was undertaken by Dr Miles Gregory for Auckland consultants Henslowe Irving Ltd, and shows how spending by the theatre and its audiences ripples through the economy, generating revenues for businesses, families and the local government.

The economic benefits of the theatre are widely felt. According to the report, in 2012 the theatre generated some $870,000 for the town of Hokitika and its hinterland. But when the economic impact of significant refurbishment undertaken last year is included, this figure rose to $1.9 million.

The theatre also emerges as a major community hub, with volunteers donating a whopping 10,200 hours of their time last year – part of the ‘invisible’ economy generated by the theatre.

But the real winner was Westland District Council, who gave operational funding of $25,000 in 2012. This report shows that seed money translated into a million dollar economic benefit, a return of $40 for every dollar invested by the Council.

“The Regent has always been at the heart of our town,” said Management Committee President Bruce Watson, “but this report shows the large economic benefits that the Regent brings to Hokitika and the wider region. “

“Our refurbishment programme is going to deliver a superb facility for Hokitika and visitors to the region, but we need better operational funding to keep our doors open. I hope this report, showing the benefits of Westland District Council’s investment, will pave the way to a continued commitment to funding the Regent”

Among the findings in the report:

– It is estimated that the Regent (including its associated food and drink outlets), its staff and theatregoers directly spent $356,252 in the local economy in 2012, through local wages paid, ancillary spending by audiences, and the purchase of local goods and services.

– The funding of $25,000 generously allocated by Westland District Council secures an impact of over $1,000,000 in the wider economy, and over $870,000 in Hokitika and the district. This represents a economic return of $40 for each $1 invested by Westland District Council.

– The theatre benefits from a extremely high level of volunteer support, which in 2012 amounted to approximately 10,200 volunteer hours – the equivalent of five full time staff. The value of this donated time on a minimum wage basis is approximately $140,000 per annum.

– When the multiplier effect of the direct spending is taken into account, the estimated value of the Regent Theatre’s regular operations to the local economy of Westland for the 2012 calendar year was $871,578.

– The estimated value of the Regent Theatre to the national economy in 2012, including the significant refurbishment activity undertaken during the year, was $1,941,228.


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