Attractions industry news

11 Oct 2018

Almost half of Northern Ireland visited a museum in 2017-18

Nearly 50 per cent of the population of Northern Ireland visited a museum in the last year, according to the latest figures from the Continuous Household Survey.

The survey, published by the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, reveals that visits to museums in Northern Ireland rose by one point year-on-year to 49 per cent in 2017-18. Additionally, 61 per cent of people aged 35-44 reported visiting a museum in the period – the highest age group figure – while over-65s were the lowest number at 36 per cent.

According to the figures, socio-economic background played a determining factor in museum visits, with 38 per cent of people from the most deprived areas visiting compared with 62 per cent of people in the least deprived areas.

Another determining factor is disability, with 39 per cent of people with a disability reporting visiting a museum in the period compared with 54 per cent of those without.

The split between national and local museums was fairly even, with 34 per cent attending a national museum and 30 per cent attending a local museum.

In terms of satisfaction, 60 per cent said a museum visit had "improved their knowledge", while 58 per cent said they "had fun". 29 per cent of those surveyed felt visiting had helped them teach their children something, while another 29 per cent felt their visit had a positive impact on their wellbeing.

The survey also showed that high numbers engaged with arts and culture in the year, with 87 per cent of adults engaging in some way – a two percentage point increase on the engagement rate for 2016/17 (85 per cent).

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