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Boom in trade over Bournemouth Air Festival - but not for everyone
9:31am Wednesday 4th September 2013 in News
RESTAURANTS and hotels have reported a boom in trade during Bournemouth Air Festival.
But some attractions said they suffered during the four-day event, which brought more than 1.3million people into town.
After a busy bank holiday weekend there were mixed opinions on the following week-end, which hosted the air festival.
The manager of Hotel Piccadilly, Tracy Pettigrew, said: “We were completely full.”
She said guests at the hotel took part in other events, such as dance shows, and added: “We were already prepared.”
Tracy praised the scheduling of the events in the area and added: “It worked out better for us because before it was the bank holiday weekend, so it was an extra weekend that we were full for.”
Contrastingly, a member of staff from The Belvedere Hotel who did not want to be named mentioned that because the event clashed with the Great Dorset Steam Fair, they could not cater for both “especially as there is no accommodation near Blandford”.
But staff at the Belvedere said they were fully prepared regardless of the timetabling and that they ‘are already full for the same weekend next year.’ Eateries also profited.
David Southam, catering manager of The Terrace, said: “We were extremely busy. We took on six extra members of staff and were open an extra three hours each night for the full four days, meaning we closed at 11pm.”
Aruba, the beach front restaurant and bar, hosted around 1,200 to 1,300 customers throughout the weekend. Jack Noble, the deputy general manager, said: “We were absolutely packed from Thursday night until 10pm on the Sunday evening.
“It was like a normal weekend where we are busy throughout the day, but the festival just filled all the little gaps we have.”
Tom Mann, ice cream vender for Purbeck Ice Cream on the promenade, added: “There were about five or six new people taken on for the four days.
“Saturday was especially busy, and Thursday and Friday were okay.”
But Daniel Cimpoae, balloon pilot at the Bournemouth Balloon, said “business was rubbish” over the air festival.
He said that the bank holiday weekend was busier and that the team ‘got prepared for nothing’.
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