Taylor Swift's Eras Tour shows trigger earthquake readings in Scotland; estimated $98 million economic boost

Taylor Swift’s three nights of sold-out concerts in Edinburgh, U.K., triggered earthquake readings up to nearly four miles from the show venue, according to the British Geological Survey, the country’s national earthquake monitoring agency.

And the financial boost to both the city and the entire country is expected to be seismic too, with Swift’s Eras Tour set to add an estimated £1 billion ($1.27 billion) to the British economy, according to research from U.K. bank Barclays.

Edinburgh’s Murrayfield Stadium saw record-breaking attendance over the concert weekend as the American megastar serenaded glitter-clad fans for roughly three and a half hours each night on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The activity was mainly generated by fans dancing in time to the music and reached its peak at 160 beats per minute (bpm) during ‘…Ready For It?’, where the crowd was transmitting approximately 80 kW of power,” BGS wrote in a report, adding that that was “equivalent to around 6000 car batteries.

BGS uses advanced scientific instruments delicate enough to identify even the slightest seismic activity from miles away; while it detected the stadium’s vibrations, they were “unlikely to have been felt by anyone other that those in the immediate vicinity,” the agency wrote.

Swift’s songs “Ready For It?” “Cruel Summer” and “Champagne Problems” generated the most significant seismic activity each night, it said. Even with Scotland’s chilly temperatures and occasional bursts of rain, fans made sure to shake it off in the stands.

Record attendance

Friday night’s concert, with roughly 73,000 people in attendance, broke a record as the most highly-attended concert in Scottish history — and each subsequent night then broke the previous night’s record, with a final all-time high attendance for Scotland recorded on Sunday.

“It’s been shockingly amazing in Edinburgh because every night I got to go on stage and they pulled me aside and said, ‘You know this crowd broke the all-time stadium attendance record for all of Scotland for all of time’,” Swift told fans from the stage on Sunday.

“Thank you, Edinburgh! That’s absolutely the wildest way to welcome a lass to your city.”

City officials knew all too well Swift’s reputation for boosting local economies; when tens of thousands of tourists streamed into the city for the concert weekend, local authorities and businesses were ready for it.

Edinburgh set up an official online Taylor Swift Fan Hub and advertised a curated “Taylored Taste Trail” involving more than 40 local businesses offering Swift-themed cocktails, pastries, deals and activities to capitalize on the international visitor gold rush.

These sell-out shows brought huge and wide-ranging benefits to the city — reflected both in terms of the estimated up to £77m ($98 million) it contributed to the local economy, but also as a further boost to our global reputation as a great place to live, work and visit,” Edinburgh City Council Leader Cammy Day wrote in a post on the city’s official government website Wednesday.

“I’d also like to pay tribute to the hundreds of thousands of Swifties for their behaviour which, by all accounts, was exemplary,” Day added.

Swift’s Eras Tour spans 22 countries and 152 dates over 21 months, and has already shattered records as the highest-grossing concert tour of all time, surpassing $1 billion in revenue in its first eight months. For reference, the world’s second-highest grossing show, Elton John’s Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour, accumulated $939 million over five years.

The American singer-songwriter has a total of fifteen shows planned in the U.K. including her three performances in Scotland, with three nights in Liverpool, one in Cardiff, and eight shows in London’s Wembley Stadium across June and August.

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