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As Worcester Warriors are relegated we take a look at the economic fall-out to the city
WITH Worcester's best supported sports team facing the prospect of relegation, the question of the lasting effect that will have on the city looms.
Worcester Warriors playing in a lower division could mean lower crowds at Sixways, and less people visiting the city, but the impact on the city's economy is deemed to be quite minimal.
Amanda Millichip, Assistant Tourism & Marketing Manager of Destination Worcestershire, said: 'We are sorry to see Worcester Warriors may be relegated.
"Although many fans travel in by coach, and do not tend to use local accommodation, pubs and food outlets, it is inevitable fans that do use the opportunity to extend their visit with an overnight stay are less likely to do so."
In any sport, relegation is deemed bad, but the outlook for Worcester is one of general positivity.
The Warriors were playing in the rugby championship in 2010/11, and is a time not deemed to have been too damaging to the city's economy.
Adrian Field, of Worcester BID, said: "Last time they were relegated it was not a massive issue.
"Worcester has a loyal following and away fans will come like they did last time. There's no reason for that to change.
"If relegated, they will be top of the tree in that division, so attendances may not be impacted too heavily.
"We expect the pubs and hotels to do well if they go down, as Worcester is an attractive place to visit and to stay for a weekend. "
One pub owner, whose premises is seen as a rugby supporter's club, doesn't expect to be impacted too heavily either.
Rob Turner, manager of Mount Pleasant Inn, said: " We have a good affiliation with the Warriors.
"In terms of them going down we are quite confident the pub will be OK.
"We have a good set of regulars coming here, and we show a lot of rugby anyway, not just the Warriors.
"When Warriors were in the Championship they were getting good crowds into the city."
The City Council are also echoing the views that Worcester's visiting numbers and economy should be relatively unscathed if relegation comes to fruition.
Jeoff Williams, Deputy Leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder, Economic Prosperity, said: " I have been a season ticket holder for several years and Worcester has an avid following of supporters.
"We would prefer to stay in the Premier league, but if the Warriors do go down it's not all doom and gloom.
"It can be used as an opportunity to showcase the city to a whole new set of fans, as well as the club's fantastic ground and facilities which are among the best in the country.
"There will be a whole new set of fans and crowds to attract here for the pubs and hotels."
Worcester Warriors were contacted but declined to comment until their league status was confirmed.
The figures below only apply to home matches in the league, not cup matches or friendlies.
The two league campaigns will both see 11 games at Sixways throughout the season.
- In the 2010/11 season, around 74,000 fans attended matches at Sixways Stadium.
-That is an average of around 6,700 fans per home game.
-During this season's campaign around 76,800 fans have visited Sixways
-That is an average of around 6,900 fans a game, based on 11 matches, not 10, and the attendance for the 11th match staying true to the average.
-If the average attendance is applied to the remaining home game, it would mean a total of around 83,700 fans for the entire campaign.
-If relegated, and attendance figures stay the same for next year's Championship campaign, it would mean around 9,700 fewer fans attending home league games for the year.
-There is still one more league game to be played at Warrior's home ground to be played against Gloucester on Saturday, May 10.
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