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Flying the flag for city’s evening offer

 

Leeds is getting ready to paint the town purple after receiving a prestigious award for offering a great evening out.

The city has been awarded Purple Flag status for excellence in managing its evening and night time economy. Purple Flag is an accreditation process run by the Association of Town and City Management (ATCM) similar to the Green Flag award for parks and the Blue Flag for beaches, and is the benchmark for good night time destinations.

The award flies the flag for Leeds, demonstrating its strong provision of entertainment, food, drink and culture between the hours of 5pm-5am. It celebrates the city’s offer as vibrant, diverse, clean, safe, well managed and providing a positive experience to customers.

Leeds is only the second place in West Yorkshire to be awarded Purple Flag status.

The award comes after a rigorous application process, led by LeedsBID (Business Improvement District), Leeds City Council and NHS Public Health in conjunction with several integral key partners, who all play a vital role in the evening economy. The city’s evening activity was evaluated against a number of key themes and a challenging overnight assessment carried out.

Other organisations instrumental in the success of the application were West Yorkshire Police, Safer Leeds, BACIL (Businesses Against Crime in Leeds), Leeds Pubwatch and British Transport Police.

 

LeedsBID Chief Executive Andrew Cooper said: “This is great news for Leeds and this accreditation is the result of the excellent collaborative working which exists in our city. The award demonstrates the strong and varied provision of entertainment, culture and leisure offer between the hours of 5pm and 5am which is also very well-managed, and Leeds as a city of choice for a great night out.”

“The evening and night time economy is an integral part of the city centre experience and economy and to receive national recognition for this is an achievement we should all be extremely proud of.”

“LeedsBID is about enhancing the city centre for all who use it and such an accolade is invaluable in raising the profile of the city both locally and nationally.”

 

Councillor Richard Lewis, Leeds City Council’s executive member for regeneration, transport and planning, said: “We are delighted to be awarded ATCM Purple Flag Accreditation, which recognises the range of positive work that is being undertaken in Leeds city centre with partners to provide a night time economy to visitors that is diverse, clean, safe and well managed.”

 

Inspector Andy Berriman, who heads the Leeds City Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “The award is testament to all the work that we and partner agencies have been doing for a number of years now to keep people safe in the night-time economy. The Purple Flag accreditation will provide the opportunity to develop that co-ordinated approach even further which can only be a good thing for people visiting the city and for businesses."

 

Leeds will officially receive its Purple Flag accreditation, which is reviewed annually, at a special awards ceremony next month (February).

 

Leeds City Skyline - Richard Moran Photography