Ipswich Town's Premier League promotion 'could bring £600m to the town'

Ipswich Town's Harry Clarke celebrates their side�s promotion to the Premier League after the Sky Bet Championship match at Portman Road, Ipswich. Picture date: Saturday May 4, 2024.
Ipswich Town's Premier League promotion could bring half a billion pounds to the area. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Ipswich Town's Premier League promotion could bring half a billion pounds to the area, a business leader has said.

It will be the first time in 22 years that the Blues will be in the top tier, after Saturday's 2-0 victory over Huddersfield.

Terry Baxter, who represents local businesses in Ipswich Central Business Improvement District, said the financial and emotional benefits will be "massive".

"You can't understate how important promotion to the Premier League is, not only for the club, but more importantly for the town," he said.

"We're talking about somewhere between £500 and £600 million worth of economic benefit to the area and that's huge for a town like Ipswich.

Ipswich Town celebrates promotion to the Premier League Credit: PA

"More people coming in, more people staying in hotels, more people eating in restaurants. It makes a massive difference."

He continued: "I sat on the Waterfront, just after the game and all it was, was a sea of smiles.

"People were feeling very positive and that's not always the case in Ipswich. So actually, to have something to get behind, a focal point, to celebrate success is very important to us and Ipswich certainly did that."

Terry Baxter, from Ipswich Central BID, says the club's promotion will bring massive benefits to the town. Credit: ITV News Anglia

There have been huge celebrations since Saturday, with fans invading the pitch at Portman Road.

Thousands gathered in the town for the open top bus parade and heroes reception on Bank Holiday Monday.

Big screens were also in place in Christchurch Park to give everyone the opportunity to enjoy the celebrations.

The Blues went above and beyond on Saturday - getting three points in the Championship, when they needed just one, to guarantee promotion back to the Premier League.

The last time they were in the top flight was in 2002.

They've achieved back-to-back promotions, having gone up from League One last season.

Ipswich fans invade the pitch at Portman Road after their club secured promotion to the Premier League. Credit: PA

Just two seasons ago, Ipswich were dumped out of the FA Cup by League Two side Barrow, prompting legend Terry Butcher to bemoan that his former side were "not a big club any more".

Kieran McKenna was appointed as manager the day after that cup exit and has since propelled the Blues' form to rival the most successful teams in the country.

By September 2023, no club in England's top four divisions had won more league points than Ipswich since McKenna's first game in charge in December 2021.

Their promotion from League One last season saw them score over 100 goals and for their return to the Championship, McKenna chose not to make sweeping changes to his squad.

That has made Ipswich's storming promotion charge all the more commendable, as the Blues have recorded over 90 points - again topping the scoring charts.

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