THE closure of Carlisle's leading music venues means the city has lost an estimated £650,000, according to new research.

Eventopedia has looked at the impact of the closure of leading venues The Sands Centre, The Old Fire Station and The Brickyard over a 12-month period from March.

It has taken into account the amount of cancelled events, the average cost of a ticket and each venue's capacity.

In order to establish the wider impact on the local economy, the data also takes into account the average cost of a pint, a meal in a restaurant and a parking space for four hours to indicate an overall loss to the city from cancelled and postponed events.

Eventopedia says all cancelled events at the The Sands Centre alone over the year will cost the local economy £550,161 while for every cancelled show there, the local economy loses up to £42,320.

But it's likely the figures are an underestimate of the true economic impact as the research only take into account three venues.

Nor does it consider the economic boost that would have been brought to the city by Sir Tom Jones and Little Mix's performances in Bitts Park, which has a capacity of 18,000.

Eventopedia has only considered the cancellation of 13 events at The Sands Centre, which has a capacity of 1,800 in its main hall.

Daniel Charlton, events manager at The Sands Centre, confirmed that 120 events due to take place in the main hall have been rescheduled since March, meaning that the city will instead benefit from their wider economic boost in in 2021 and 2022.

"Eventopedia’s research highlights the challenges the pandemic is having on Carlisle’s entertainment venues, as well as the wider local economy," he said.

"However, we remain positive and are delighted that we will be able to present a socially distanced pantomime at The Sands this Christmas; thanks to funding from the Government Cultural Recovery Fund and ongoing support from Carlisle City Council.

"Events are a critically important part of the culture of our fantastic city and we’re working hard with promoters, producers and the city council to move forward with our programme.

"We look forward to welcoming back audiences as soon as we are able."

Stephen Higgs, portfolio holder for Culture, Heritage & Leisure at Carlisle City Council, said it was difficult to comment on the research.

"Carlisle is hurting, I have no doubt about that, and at the moment in the lockdown a lot of the hospitality and venues like The Sands Centre have certainly suffered.

"It doesn't sound like enough to me. I don't want it to be any worse but I would be surprised if that was the total. I would have thought that was an underestimate of the impact."