I can only assume that Jake Berry was consoling the South on its poverty. Going to the opera is a lot cheaper than going to the football, and no one is ever going to charge you £14:95, over and above an existing subscription, to watch an opera on television.
By the way, I know nothing about opera, just as I know nothing about football. For the reasons stated, however, I am thinking of getting into opera. Either I am a Northern skinflint, or I am so poor that I could almost be Southern. Probably both.