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TT races have 'inevitable impact' on local businesses, says DfE

Department encourages businesses to get in touch with concerns

The Department for Enterprise says the nature of road closures for the TT has long had an inevitable impact on both residents and businesses.

It's after a local business owner told Manx Radio they would be shutting down for the racing week as they 'gain nothing' from the Island's biggest motorcycle event.

The Department has released a statement responding to concerns raised by the Dovecote Tea Room.

It says it encourages any business experiencing operational difficulties due to the new schedule, to get in touch directly, adding: "Whilst we are not able to comment on individual businesses, we recognise that the hospitality sector is currently facing a number of challenges."

It also revealed visitor numbers throughout the year are projected to reach 330,000 this year, compared to 318,000 last year.

The statement in full: "Whilst hosting the TT Races is clearly very positive for the lsland's economy, we do recognise that the nature of the event requiring main road closures during racing has long had an inevitable impact on both residents and local businesses across the lsland. Their ongoing support is critical to being able to maintain these unique events. 

"The revised TT Schedule was first implemented in 2023, following broad consultation, and seeks to drive long- term sustainability of the event by creating two long weekend options for visiting fans, aiming to increase visitor numbers and give greater flexibility in regards to accommodation capacity, as well as lessening the impact of unexpected and prolonged closures on residents and demand on volunteers, teams and competitors.

"Whilst the broad economic impact of the TT Races as a whole in 2023 was positive in regards to increased visitor spend, the Department remains committed to continuing to monitor the impact the new schedule has on the economy as a whole as it enters its second year. 

"Through Business Isle of Man, the Department is committed to supporting the hospitality sector, including working with the Visit Agency to stimulate demand for hospitality and the wider local economy at all points throughout the year. They would encourage any business experiencing operational difficulties to contact them (contact-business@gov.im). Through out Enterprise Support division, the Department also offers a free of charge independent Business Advisory services.

"Whilst we are not able to comment on individual businesses, we recognise that the hospitality sector is currently facing a number of challenges. The Department and Business Isle of Man will continue to discuss with the sector as whole these challenges and work to consider further practical options to enable them to be sustained, and thrive all year round."

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