Manchester Night Time Visitor Economy Research

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The Project

On two separate occasions, Enventure Research has been appointed to undertake research with evening and night time visitors to Manchester City Centre by the Manchester Community Safety Partnership.  The Partnership brings together a number of organisations, including New Economy Manchester, Manchester City Council and Greater Manchester Police, to work together to tackle crime and disorder in Manchester, helping to ensure that the city is a safe place to live, work and enjoy.


The night time economy has become increasingly important in Manchester, with an estimate 150,000 people visiting the city centre each weekend to enjoy the nightlife, generating significant revenue in overnight stays and the growth of hotels and licenced premises.


The initial visitor survey, undertaken in November and December 2015, was conducted on-street between the hours of 6pm and 11pm by a team of trained interviewers who abided by the Market Research Society Code of Conduct.


Research Methods

A short questionnaire was designed by Enventure Research (in partnership with New Economy Manchester, Manchester City Council and Greater Manchester Police) to collect information about visitor profiles, reasons for visiting Manchester city centre, areas visited and visitors’ duration of stay.   The questionnaire took approximately five minutes to administer and visitors’ responses were recorded on handheld mobile devices.


The interviewing team utilised a number of carefully selected sampling points across the city centre to ensure that a wide variety of visitors had the opportunity to participate.  To achieve a representative sample at each location, interviewers approached every nth visitor to produce a random sample, rather than a sample of similar visitors who were present at the same time.  This frequency varied depending on the average footfall at each attraction or business and the time of day.


In total, the views of 1,100 night time visitors to Manchester were gathered, providing useful insight into their habits, attitudes and opinions.


The second visitor survey was conducted over two weekends on Friday and Saturday evenings from 1st to 9th July 2016.  The same methodology was used as during the first phase of the research, but the questionnaire was adapted slightly to include additional questions about the use of public transport and safety.  This opportunity for additional survey work was also used to conduct the survey later in the night, between the hours of 9pm and 1am on the first weekend and 8pm and midnight on the second weekend.


Results and Benefits to the Client

Due to the time of year that the survey was conducted, it was agreed that the presence of the Christmas markets in Manchester city centre may have influenced the survey results, as almost a third of visitors provided this reason for visiting.  Therefore an additional period of research was commissioned to collect survey responses outside of the influence of the Christmas period.


The second survey gathered the views of 452 visitors to Manchester city centre.  The results built on the findings from the previous night time survey and provided further evidence for further decision making and clear direction for the management of Manchester city centre’s night time economy.


To find out more about this, and other similar projects, please contact us – we would be happy to help!

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