Bridgerton effect brings £5m into South West’s economy

The Bridgerton effect is estimated to be worth £5m to the South West’s economy.

The risque take on Regency England full of society galas and family drama, is returning to TV screens for a third series next week.

And one area is set to reap the benefits – Bath, and wider West of England region,  where much of the show, which has attracted more than 200 million viewers on Netflix – with both series featuring in Netflix’s top ten most viewed shows of all time – was filmed.

New statistics from Visit West show the popular drama has contributed more than £5 million to the regional economy with UK and international visitors, and expects that figure to increase in 2024 after the release of Part 1 (next Thursday 16 May) and Part 2 (13 June) of the latest series.

Bridgerton has even sparked the development of a new industry surrounding the show, with thousands of extra visitors to The Guildhall, Royal Crescent, and other historic Bath attractions which feature in the popular drama.

This includes the creation of new tours and experiences. Bath Walking Tours has specifically designed a new tour taking in the show’s most memorable filming locations.

Dan Norris, West of England Mayor, said: “Some people say Bath is ‘one of the stars of Bridgerton’. I would say that actually the reverse is true – Bridgerton is one of the stars of this incredible city, and our amazing West of England region. The series showcases the brilliant sites and attractions that make Bath what it is, and all at their most romantic. It’s no wonder it put people in the mood for some West of England romance.

“The ‘Bridgerton Effect’ is huge for our region – generating millions for the West, and sparking a whole new tourist industry as thousands from every part of the world flock here.”

But the streets of Bath and some of the most familiar landmarks in the West of England are to appear more frequently on the big screen as a slew of TV dramas and films follow Bridgerton’s lead, including the new series of the hit comedy thriller The Outlaws, based in Bristol, the much-anticipated BBC drama Wolf Hall and Disney series Rivals, all of which were produced in the region.

The series follows a number of positive developments in the West of England film and TV sector in the last 18 months, including the opening of not one but two new film studios – the £12 million Mayoral Combined Authority-funded Bottle Yard Studios expansion (TBY2) as well as the £1 million Box7 studio that doubles up as a nightclub – both opened by Mayor Norris.

The West of England currently has the largest concentration of production companies outside of London churning out content watched by 800 million people each month. The region is best known for its natural history focus, with 35% of all natural history content is produced here.