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WE SPEND pounds 1500 ON KIDS' HOBBIES; And they give up most of them in less than 5 weeks.

Byline: By Paula Murray

PUSHY parents spend a mammothpounds 12 billion on their children's hobbies, according to the latest research.

The average family forks out pounds 1500 on evening and weekend activities for each child up to eight years old.

But the bad news is that bored kids give up most of the pastimes within five weeks.

Research by ad agency WAA found a further pounds 980 is spent between the ages of nine and 12.

The pounds 1500 is only the cost of tuition for the out-of-school classes and activities. It doesn't take into account the cost of equipment such as tennis rackets, football kit, riding boots and even pianos.

WAA found parents of children aged up to eight will spend pounds 9billion for hobbies and sports, while families with kids aged 9-12 will spend a further pounds 3 billion.

Henry Becket, of WAA, said: 'We found the majority of the classes and activities parents organised for their children were undertaken when the child was too young to appreciate or learn them - for example, flute and piano lessons at three years old.

'There are also huge time constraints which meant the activities conflicted with parents' work, shopping or just 'chill out' time.'

Children aged up to eight tried on average six types of classes and activities.

Some had tried as many as 20 before the age of nine. The most popular activities were Saturday football, swimming, ballet, gymnastics, drama, tennis, horse riding, trampoline and piano.

Some of the more unusual included gardening and learning Russian or Chinese.

WAA found around40per cent of the costs of activities was wasted after children stopped the activity before the course was finished.


WHAT A RACKET:; Much hobby cash is wasted
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jul 10, 2004
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