Giants return was Liverpool’s biggest-ever event generating £60m

New report shows the Liverpool’s Dream event offered a massive boost to the visitor economy with more than 1.2m people flocking to see the Giants on both sides of the river. Tony McDonough reports

More than 1.2m people came to see the Giants in October 2018


October’s return of the Giants generated more than £60m for the Liverpool city region economy – making it the biggest and most successful event ever held in Merseyside.

The Liverpool’s Dream event saw 1.3m people flock to locations in Liverpool and Wirral for from October 4 to 7 with around 1.22m coming to Liverpool and 80,000 to Wirral. In Liverpool £58m was generated and in Wirral £2.2m.

It smashes previous records held by 2014’s Giants event Memories of August 1914 which had an economic impact of £46m, and 2015’s Three Queens event which welcomed 1.2m visitors to both Liverpool and Wirral. Many of the city’s most famous attractions also saw a 100% rise in attendance.

Incredible figures

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said: “These incredible figures won’t come as a surprise to anyone who witnessed the visit of the Giants.

This is a city used to staging major, outdoor events, but October’s event took it to the next level. The iconic image of the Giants on The Strand surrounded by people as far as the eye can see captured it perfectly.

Around 1.3m people came onto Liverpool and Wirral’s streets for the Giants. Picture by Gareth Jones


The creative brilliance of Royal de Luxe attracted people not only from across the region, but from all over the globe who came here specifically to see Wirral and Liverpool become a stage on which these Giant characters would perform.”

The report also found:

  • 75% of visitors were from the Liverpool city region and the wider North West, with 22% travelling from elsewhere around the UK and 3% were overseas tourists.
  • The average length of stay in the city region was 2.7 nights.
  • Visitors staying over spent on average £138.99 per person, with day visitors spending £30 per person.
  • Of the non-residents interviewed, 97% were likely to return to Liverpool in the future. 
  • When asked how they found out about the event, 75% found out from coverage in the media. 
  • More than half of those interviewed said they would be eating out as part of their trip to see the Giants.
  • The majority of people, 90%, said that the Giants event was their sole reason for heading to Liverpool or Wirral.
  • Just over half of the respondents had attended a previous Giants event in either 2012 or 2014.
  • More than two thirds of visitors arrived at the event on foot.

Global reach

When it came to social media, the official Giants accounts proved massively popular with #LiverpoolGiants trending each day (4-7 October) and tweets, Facebook and Instagram posts reached 12.4m people. There was interaction with followers from across the globe including Australia, New Zealand, China, Columbia, South Africa and Canada.

The interactive map which showed exactly where the Giants were, was visited 542,326 times.

Other Liverpool institutions and attractions felt the benefit of the unforgettable event when they compared the figures from the Giants weekend, with the same weekend in 2017. Tate Liverpool saw a 53% increase in visitors; Albert Dock, 65%; Liverpool One, 25% and  National Museum Liverpool’s waterfront venues welcomed 54,092 visitors across the four days – a massive 108% increase on 2017.

Catering sales at Wirral’s Floral Pavilion were up by 73% and they welcomed 350 visitors on the Friday.

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