Consultants are being drafted in to assess the economic impact of Perth’s Christmas lights switch-on ceremony.
Perth and Kinross Council has struck a deal with East Renfrewshire-based Bellerby Economics to draw up a report on the November 19 event.
The same company was appointed to evaluate last year’s show – featuring, amongst others, 80s icon Billy Ocean – and declared it had made £1.6 million for the local economy.
Bellerby Economics, which has carried out similar studies up and down the country, has also been tasked to assess “visitor profile, visitor spend and economic impact” of the city’s St Andrews Day Festival on November 27.
The council is paying Bellerby nearly £7,000 for the work.
The results by Bellerby have been questioned by some city centre businesses, who said their trade had been negatively effected on the day of the switch-on.
Kairen Ruse, the owner of fashion shop Blues and Browns, said: “I’ve done a bit of research on this Bellerby Economics bunch and quite frankly the council don’t need to waste more taxpayers money on this company assessing the economic impact of the switch on. They should just listen to the shopkeepers instead.”
The star attraction for this year’s switch-on will be announced soon.