The legacy left by the London 2012 Olympics was passed on to other sports in 2013, with attendances across the UK’s other major sports (excluding athletics) up by one million on the year beforehand. The strong appeal of attending one of sport’s major events has seen the sector perform well during a tough economic period, as despite some price increases, demand has continued to outweigh supply at venues such as Wimbledon, Lord’s and Silverstone.

Now that a raft of new special events is set to come to the UK, the value of the live event market is set to return to and even exceed the level seen during the Olympic bounce, climbing to a projected £1,667 million by 2018.

This report investigates which sports consumers have watched either live at the event, live on TV at home, live on TV elsewhere or live on the internet during the last 12 months. Focusing on live streaming, we look at what types of services and devices spectators have used to watch live sport in that time.

The report also examines spectators’ online behaviour (as they watch events), and consumers’ attitudes towards watching live sport. Finally we analyse the ways in which venues could encourage people to visit more events, more regularly.


This report focuses on UK adults’ experience of watching live spectator sport, either at an event venue, on television or via the internet. Listening to live radio commentary and watching television highlights or live coverage on a time-shift basis are not included in the core definition of the report.

Market value estimations comprise consumer expenditure on sports event tickets only. Spending on sports television and internet service subscriptions is excluded, as is secondary expenditure at spectator sports venues (on food, beverages, merchandise etc).

Value figures throughout this report are at retail selling prices unless otherwise stated.

Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen’s Printer for Scotland.


ARC Arena Racing Company
ATP Association of Tennis Professionals
BBC British Broadcasting Corporation
BSkyB British Sky Broadcasting
BT British Telecom
ECB England and Wales Cricket Board
EIU Economist Intelligence Unit
FA Football Association
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