Affluent and professional consumers of culture

  • Affluent and settled group with many working in higher managerial and professional occupations
  • Keen consumers of culture, with broad tastes but a leaning towards heritage and more classical or traditional offerings
  • Often mature families or retirees, living largely in leafy provincial suburban or greenbelt comfort
  • A group willing to travel and pay for premium experiences, their habits perhaps influenced by commuting
  • Motivations are multiple, ranging from social and self-improvement, to the pursuit of learning opportunities for older children
  • Tend to be frequent attenders and potential donors

COVID-19 Commuterland Culturebuffs Profile

  • Health and Wellbeing: Usually highly engaged in sports and activities. Donate to medical research, suggesting they particularly value health. Older but generally not old (more likely than average to be 50-70) – but men in this age range have been higher risk from Covid-19. A quarter have a disability or long-term illness, which could have been added risk factors, or made lockdown more difficult.
  • Income and Employment: Relatively financially secure: if work, likely to be able to do so remotely (and if so, saving time and money on substantial commutes). Volunteer a lot, which may have been interrupted.
  • Family and Relationships: Mature families / retirees: likely to be missing seeing family members. Some older children may have returned home during lockdown.
  • Location and Environment: Live in leafy provincial/greenbelt areas: space to go out for walks. Used to travelling for cultural (and other) experiences, so may be feeling a bit hemmed in, especially as they are often reliant on cars.
  • Arts and Culture: Leaning towards heritage and classical/traditional offers: the former taste will be met sooner than the latter as organisations reopen. Usually frequent attenders, so likely to feel they are missing out (but perhaps have missed the social / quality of experience of their usual engagement when accessing content online). Lots of National Trust and English Heritage members – so opening of their sites likely to be good news for them.
  • Digital and Streaming: Already used arts organisations’ websites, but a bit functionally: their high engagement in combination with lockdown may have encouraged them to use streaming much more than usual (especially for big name performers / organisations e.g. National Theatre), which may have taken a little getting used to.
  • Importance of Arts: High importance and broad knowledge (so likely to know which online content matches their tastes), have a range of motivation types (social, self-improvement, learning for older children). More likely to have spent lockdown reading (high propensity) than gaming (low).
  • Risk: Some can be culturally a little risk averse. Perhaps also more risk averse re. health, given their age (and having been able to isolate effectively during lockdown – ‘why spoil it now?’).
  • Other: Potential donors, inc for larger amounts, or in converting tickets to donations. Highest group for volunteering (esp. for heritage), which will have
    been interrupted by lockdown.

More about the impact of COVID-19 on audiences

More about Commuterland Culturebuffs

Culture interests

Attending arts and cultural events form an integral part of their social and family lives. They have amassed experiences of a wide range of artistic offerings, have a broad cultural frame of reference and are knowledgeable about the arts. They can afford to pay for high quality artistic events which provide them with opportunities to spend time with their families, socialise with friends and peers, and provide learning or self-improvement opportunities for themselves and their children.

Although voracious consumers of all artforms they tend to prefer classical offerings. Many are open to contemporary programme choices, but there are a large proportion who are risk averse to trying anything new.

They rank second only to Metroculturals in the engagement ladder for every artform genre, except for culturally specific events, where their engagement is still above average, but lower than all other artforms.

Plays/drama and art exhibitions are the most commonly attended events, along with musicals and live music.

They represent the keenest audiences for opera, ballet and classical music, and are audiences for some of the less widely attended artforms such as contemporary dance and jazz.

Commuterland Culturebuffs lean slightly more towards visiting heritage sites than museums and galleries, but partake in both these activities in much greater numbers than most other groups. Membership of The National Trust at 34%, is higher than another other group.


Other leisure interests

Commuterland Culturebuffs lead highly active lifestyles which are not limited to arts and cultural activities, and they pursue a very broad range of leisure interests. More than two thirds are regularly engaged in sports and exercise activities (more than any other group), and they are also amongst the most apt to spend their leisure time reading.

Gardening and eating out at restaurants and visiting bars and clubs are also popular activities. However, they are amongst those least likely to spend time playing computer games.


Located in provincial suburban and greenbelt locations, often within commuting distance of urban centres across the country. Especially prevalent in the South East but less so in London.

Visit our Audience Mapping tool in the Audience Finder dashboard to investigate the location of this segment.


Creative participation

Participation in cultural and creative activities is as important to Commuterland Culturebuffs as attending events.

They participate widely in performing arts activities and can be found wherever there are activities like ballet, singing and playing musical instruments. Where there are opportunities for public rehearsals and performances of plays and opera there are likely to be a significant contingent of Commuterland Culturebuffs.

They are amongst those most likely to purchase original works of art and handmade crafts.

They have a much higher than average propensity to participate in street arts, carnivals and to practice circus skills.Photography and film/video making are also relatively popular.


Commuterland Culturebuffs enjoy a high standard of living, with 43% of households having an annual income above £50,000, and a further 37% with an income between £25,000 – £50,000.

They are very well educated, 47% have obtained a degree level qualification or higher.

They value the arts intrinsically and recognise the wider social impacts. They also feel heritage is an important contributor to sense of place and believe in the conservation of local heritage sites.

43% household income £53k +

Community involvement

Commuterland Culturebuffs have a tendency to be quite involved in local communities. They are the group that is most likely to engage in volunteering opportunities and more than a third will have done so in the last year. They chiefly get involved in volunteering either through leading groups, membership of committees or organising or helping to run events. More than a third will have raised money for charitable causes in the last year through sponsored events.


Commuterland Culturebuffs are likely prospects for making donations to arts and cultural organisations. 10% will have donated to an arts organisation in the last year, whilst 22% will have made donations to museums and galleries and 24% to heritage sites.

They are also amongst those most likely to make larger donations. Of those making donations to arts organisations, almost a quarter gave more than £100.

Their motivations for giving to arts and culture are quite altruistic, motivated to give in order to preserve those cultural facilities, rather than for any personal benefit.

Charitable giving outside of the arts is most likely to be directed towards medical research, children and young people or rescue services.

35% volunteer each year

Rank 1st for volunteering


The Daily Mail, The Daily Telegraph and The Times are the most commonly read newspapers. They are also much more likely than average to read The Financial Times, The Guardian and The Independent, which have much smaller circulations.


Almost all Commuterland Culturebuffs own their own homes, and many of them outright. They live mainly in large detached houses, often with five bedrooms, even though some no longer have children left at home.

They are found all around the country, in suburban and greenbelt locations often within commuting range of major urban centres, with the greatest concentration (almost a third) living in the South East, but are less prevalent in London.



Older families and singles – more than two thirds are families. They tend to be older families, but a large proportion of households with children are mixed with some where children are old enough to have left home. Over 70% in this group are aged between 46 and 70 years old.

Digital habits

With busy lives to manage, this group make good practical use of the internet without spending long hours online. They regularly visit arts and cultural organisation’s websites to find out information and plan a visit – up to two thirds of those who use websites in this way may go on to book tickets online.

Commuterland Culturebuffs are also more likely than average to view or download artistic content online, and a quarter will have done so in the last year. However, they are far less likely to use social networking sites to find out information about what’s going on locally, or to plan a visit, but may use social media to share and discuss artistic content.

70% aged 46 to 70

Diversity in segment

Commuterland Culturebuffs are a relatively homogenous group, uniformly affluent and active, concentrated but far from exclusively in the south, largely over 50, with some diversity in terms of political leanings and family status. The large majority are UK nationals with a white background, but there are representations of people from Jewish/Armenian, Sikh, Greek/Greek Cypriot, and Hindu backgrounds. 24% have a disability or long-term illness.

Best segment match

Arts Audiences Insight: Traditional Culture Vultures

Mosaic 2014: Prestige Positions

Attending and socialising with friends, family and peers go hand in hand for them, so opportunities for them to be both artistically stimulated and to enjoy themselves socially need to be provided.

They are potentially time poor, value time as a resource, and will pay premium prices for offerings that they can be confident will provide high quality experiences.

Open to a wide variety of arts and cultural experiences, they have a preference towards the classical, although they can and are persuaded to attend contemporary, popular, mainstream and other cultural offerings. However, a large proportion may take some convincing to try something completely new or ‘risky’.

Heritage sites and events are important for this group and they feel a sense of custodial responsibility towards conservation of cultural heritage – 98% feel that heritage sites should be looked after. They consider that the arts and culture also play an important role in local communities, support public funding and make larger than average charitable donations to arts and cultural organisations and heritage sites.

Programme preferences

Programme offerings such as plays, musicals, opera, ballet and classical music are core artistic choices.

Guarantees of quality are important so classic or traditional productions and established performers and companies are popular. The endorsement of well-known and respected artists or experts will be well received.

They are also open to artforms such as contemporary dance and jazz, literary events, video/electronic arts and crafts, but these are generally not as well attended as more traditional artforms.


Membership of heritage organisations is very high, and there is a strong interest in its place in the community, and its conservation. These could form the basis of mutually beneficial partnerships.

The philanthropic habits of Commuterland Culturebuffs suggest that they have strong empathy with children and young people’s charities, as well as with medical research and rescue services. These also may form a potential basis for fruitful creative partnerships.


Creating an atmosphere and facilities conducive to socialising with friends around events is important

Place: Environment

There is a strong social motivation behind their arts attending, so the opportunity to share food and drink in pleasant café/restaurant surroundings at the events themselves will be a benefit. High quality facilities and customer service would be important features to promote.

Families tend to be older, but there are significant numbers for whom it would be worth foregrounding any Family Friendly features.

Place: Access & distance

Commuterland Culturebuffs enjoy quite good access to cultural provision. They live in commuter locations within reach of urban centres where transport links ought to be good, and car ownership is above average. However, highlighting and recommending best travel options is likely to be useful.

Most enjoy good health and there is a reduced tendency amongst Commuterland Culturebuffs to limit their activities due to disability. So they are generally not likely to require specific measures that go above or beyond normal accessibility provision.


Commuterland Culturebuffs can afford to attend regularly, and will pay premium prices to ensure a high quality of experience. Discounting strategies are less likely to be effective compared to offering priority access, or opportunities to add value to the experience.

As there is such a strong family and social element to their motivations for attending, opportunities to encourage ancillary spending through catering and retail should be emphasised.

Time is as important as money, so emphasise quality and price accordingly


The internet is an important information channel, with many using cultural organisations’ websites to find out information and to plan and book visits online.

There is a complex mixture of decision making styles amongst Commuterland Culturebuffs, but a majority are instinctively analytical in their approach and value clear information above all. Some will be confident in their own analysis to make choices themselves, but others may like the reassurance of trusted recommendation – therefore expert endorsements, or content to mobilise word of mouth is recommended.

Commuterland Culturebuffs are responsive to email and post but less likely to respond to mobile, landline or SMS communications.


Already willing and active arts and cultural participants they are open to a wide range of opportunities such as craft, playing musical instruments, painting, sculpting and photography. These help enhance the sense that the arts make up a significant part of who they are. Opportunities to either learn or improve artistic skills individually or collectively through tailored programmes, or performance opportunities will be taken up, as will any ad hoc opportunities to engage.

Complete and clear information highly valued in communication

Giving & Volunteering

Commuterland Culturebuffs are likely prospects for making donations to arts and cultural organisations and top the league for giving to Museums & Galleries and Heritage. Their motivations for giving to arts and culture are quite altruistic, motivated to give in order to preserve those cultural facilities, rather than for any personal benefit.

The philanthropic habits of Commuterland Culturebuffs suggest that they have strong empathy with children and young people’s charities, as well as with medical research and rescue services.

Relationship building

As regular attenders to the arts (almost a third attend five or more different artforms annually), their breadth of artistic interests means that they are likely to attend a wide range of organisations. Ensuring quality of artistic experience, enabling social elements of attendance (café, restaurant, bar, shop etc), and maximising opportunities for depth of engagement (e.g. by enabling dialogue, encouraging input to the creative process, sharing & discussion of experience and content) are likely to help build relationships.

Increasing reach & diversity

There is a level of diversity within Commuterland Culturebuffs that may be reached through appropriately targeted offerings and communications. Subject matter is likely to be key, and sensitive presentation of culturally specific and appropriate content might be effective.

Lifestage & location

Located in provincial suburban and greenbelt locations, often within commuting distance of urban centres across the country. Especially prevalent in the South East but less so in London.


Already highly engaged, Commuterland Culturebuffs are sought after audiences. They are open to high quality offerings, which they have the means to attend regularly. Leaning towards classical programme choices, time is viewed as a valuable resource and they will pay premium prices to ensure premium artistic experiences. Opportunities that offer exclusive access, added value events such as talks and tailored interpretation/content may help to develop their loyalty to a particular artform/organisation.