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Home » TV Series Doctor Who Has Provided A £134.6m Boost To The Welsh Economy

TV Series Doctor Who Has Provided A £134.6m Boost To The Welsh Economy

Doctor Who has generated a £134.6m economic boost for the Welsh economy, according to new analysis from the BBC.

With the popular sci-fi TV series celebrating 60 years, the public service broadcaster has assessed its impact since its production was brought to Wales in 2004 up until season 13 in 2021. The total gross value added (GVA)impact is made up of direct (£68.8m),indirect (£38.7m) and induced (£24.1m).

Directly generated GVA is from Doctor Who production and post-production activities, indirect from supply chain spending and induced from its wider economic impact. For the UK economy as a whole over the same period the GVA impact has been calculated at £256m.

The report also shows that for every £1 of direct economic output from Doctor Who, a subsequent £0.96 of output was generated in Wales – combining to create a total economic contribution £1.96.

It also estimates that each series generated indirect and induced employment of 50.3 full time equivalent (FTE) jobs per series in Wales, and 94.5 FTE jobs within the UK overall.

In Wales, this breaks down as each series typically creating 33 FTE roles within the supply chain (indirect employment) and 17.4 FTE roles within the wider Welsh economy (induced employment) for each series of filming.

The report also highlights that BBC network production in Wales was relatively limited prior to 2004, with the success of Doctor Who proving a catalyst for bringing other major TV and film projects to Wales – citing major BBC-commissioned shows from Torchwood to Merlin and Atlantis to Sherlock as examples.

Doctor Who also underpinned BBC’s decision to invest in its Roath Lock studios in Cardiff Bay, which saw the broadcaster transferring long-running hospital drama series, Casualty, from Bristol.

Interviewed as part of the report, Russell T Davies, showrunner of Doctor Who for series 1-4 and the forthcoming trilogy and series said: “When people say, oh, a television drama cost £2m, what that means is £2m goes into Cardiff. £2m to the drivers and the office staff and the hospitality, the hotels and then pubs and the bars, and then supermarkets. It’s £2m ploughed into Cardiff.”

The research features a supply chain beneficiary of Doctor Who in special effects venture Real STX.

Its founder Danny Hargreaves said “Doctor Who gave me an opportunity to set up my own business, as I was working for another company before based in London, travelling every week. Imagine a 29 year old to set up a company and run one of the Nation’s biggest shows. It was such a great opportunity”

Fellow company director, Carmela Carrubba added: “One of our very first apprentices is now running the floor on set. It is great to see them becoming technicians and supervisors growing with the company. Danny has always wanted to have a local, talented, trained crew. I think we’re now a 100% Welsh crew. All this began with the success of Doctor Who coming to Wales.”

The report was undertaken by economists in the BBC public policy team, incorporating primary research conducted by Media Cymru.

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